Comparison between the clumpiness and the mixed-model attenuation AV, tot toward the center (upper plot), and the equivalent width (EW) of Hα (lower panel) for 21 starbursts in the redshift range 0.5–0.9 analyzed in Calabrò et al. (2019). The corresponding IDs are added to each galaxy, while black crosses indicate X-ray detected sources. The Spearman correlation coefficient R and the corresponding p-value are highlighted in each panel. We derived no correlation for the first diagram and a mild correlation > 3σ for the second, thus only for the latter case is shown the best linear fit (blue line, with equation included the legend) and 1σ dispersion (blue shaded region). However, even in the first plot, the highest clumpiness values are found only for the less attenuated starbursts, while low clumpiness objects are systematically more obscured (AV, tot > 15). Given that AV, tot and EW(Hα) have been used as merger stage indicators in Calabrò et al. (2019), our findings provide an indication for a possible clumpiness evolution, decreasing from early-intermediate phases to late stage mergers. This is corroborated by the subset of X-ray AGNs (likely close to the blow-out phase) showing preferentially a lower clumpiness.
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