Volume 652, August 2021
|Number of page(s)||11|
|Published online||10 August 2021|
Tracing satellite planes in the Sculptor group
I. Discovery of three faint dwarf galaxies around NGC 253
Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía, CSIC, 18080 Granada, Spain
2 Special Astrophysical Observatory of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Nizhnij Arkhyz 369167, Russia
3 LESIA, Observatoire de Paris, Université PSL, CNRS, Sorbonne Université, Université de Paris, 5 Place Jules Janssen, 92195 Meudon, France
4 Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP), An der Sternwarte 16, 14482 Potsdam, Germany
5 UAI – Unione Astrofili Italiani /P.I. Sezione Nazionale di Ricerca Profondo Cielo, 72024 Oria, Italy
6 Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics, 31 Caroline St N, Waterloo, Canada
7 Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias, c/ Vía Láctea s/n, 38205 La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
8 Departamento de Astrofísica, Universidad de La Laguna, 38206 La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
9 Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory, NSF’s NOIRLab, Casilla 603, La Serena, Chile
10 Instituto de Alta Investigación, Sede Esmeralda, Universidad de Tarapacá, Av. Luis Emilio Recabarren 2477, Iquique, Chile
Accepted: 15 June 2021
Context. In recent years, a new generation of large-scale imaging surveys have probed wide field regions for the first time around some nearby galaxies in an unprecedentedly low surface-brightness regime (∼28.0−29.0 mag arcsec−2). This provides the chance to discover very faint dwarf satellites by means of systematic visual inspection of these public deep images.
Aims. In this paper, we report the first results of a systematic survey of faint dwarf spheroidal galaxies in the vicinity of the bright late-type spiral galaxy NGC 253 by means of a visual inspection of the images taken by the Dark Energy Survey.
Methods. We performed a new NGC 253 satellite search using co-added image cutouts reprocessed in the DESI Legacy image surveys. We used GALFIT software to investigate the photometric and structural properties of three dwarf galaxies.
Results. We report the discovery of three new dwarf galaxies in the vicinity of the brightest member of the Sculptor filament, the late-type spiral NGC 253, located at a distance of 3.7 Mpc towards Anti-Virgo. We name them Do II, Do III, and Do IV. Assuming they are companions of NGC 253, their total absolute V-magnitudes fall in the −7 to −9 mag range, which is typical for dwarf satellites in the local Universe. The central surface brightness tends to be extremely low for all three discovered dwarfs and falls roughly in the range of 25−26 mag arcsec−2 in g-band. Using known data on distances and velocities of galaxies, we estimate the total virial mass of the NGC 253 group to be 8 × 1011 M⊙, which gives a virial radius of R200 = 186 kpc and a turn-around radius of 706 kpc. We also discuss the possible existence of a spatially flattened and velocity-correlated satellite system around NGC 253. This large-scale structure is orientated almost edge-on to the line of sight. The possible plane of satellites is only 31 kpc thick with a minor-to-major axis ratio of 0.14. Four out of five galaxies with measured velocities follow a common velocity trend similar to those observed in the planes of satellites around the Andromeda and Centaurus A galaxies. However, the small number of galaxies with known velocities prevents us from reaching a definitive conclusion about the formation scenario of the structure and its possible relation to the surrounding cosmic web.
Key words: galaxies: dwarf / galaxies: groups: individual: NGC 253 / galaxies: photometry
© ESO 2021
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