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Star-forming, rotating spheroidal galaxies in the GAMA and SAMI surveys

Moffett, Amanda J.; Phillipps, Steven; Robotham, Aaron S.G.; Driver, Simon P.; Bremer, Malcolm N.; Cortese, Luca; Wong, O. Ivy; Brough, Sarah; Brown, Michael J.I.; Bryant, Julia J.; Conselice, Christopher J.; Croom, Scott M.; George, Koshy; Goldstein, Greg; Goodwin, Michael; Holwerda, Benne W.; Hopkins, Andrew M.; Konstantopoulos, Iraklis S.; Lawrence, Jon S.; Lorente, Nuria P.F.; Medling, Anne M.; Owers, Matt S.; Pimbblet, Kevin A.; Richards, Samuel N.; Sweet, Sarah M.; van de Sande, Jesse


Amanda J. Moffett

Steven Phillipps

Aaron S.G. Robotham

Simon P. Driver

Malcolm N. Bremer

Luca Cortese

O. Ivy Wong

Sarah Brough

Michael J.I. Brown

Julia J. Bryant

Christopher J. Conselice

Scott M. Croom

Koshy George

Greg Goldstein

Michael Goodwin

Benne W. Holwerda

Andrew M. Hopkins

Iraklis S. Konstantopoulos

Jon S. Lawrence

Nuria P.F. Lorente

Anne M. Medling

Matt S. Owers

Kevin A. Pimbblet

Samuel N. Richards

Sarah M. Sweet

Jesse van de Sande


The Galaxy And Mass Assembly (GAMA) survey has morphologically identified a class of ‘Little Blue Spheroid’ (LBS) galaxies whose relationship to other classes of galaxies we now examine in detail. Considering a sample of 868 LBSs, we find that such galaxies display similar but not identical colours, specific star formation rates, stellar population ages, mass-to-light ratios, and metallicities to Sd-Irr galaxies. We also find that LBSs typically occupy environments of even lower density than those of Sd-Irr galaxies, where ∼65 per cent of LBS galaxies live in isolation. Using deep, high-resolution imaging from VST KiDS and the new Bayesian, 2D galaxy profile modelling code PROFIT, we further examine the detailed structure of LBSs and find that their Sérsic indices, sizes, and axial ratios are compatible with those of low-mass elliptical galaxies. We then examine SAMI Galaxy survey integral field emission line kinematics for a subset of 62 LBSs and find that the majority (42) of these galaxies display ordered rotation with the remainder displaying disturbed/non-ordered dynamics. Finally, we consider potential evolutionary scenarios for a population with this unusual combination of properties, concluding that LBSs are likely formed by a mixture of merger and accretion processes still recently active in low-redshift dwarf populations. We also infer that if LBS-like galaxies were subjected to quenching in a rich environment, they would plausibly resemble cluster dwarf ellipticals.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Oct 21, 2019
Journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Print ISSN 0035-8711
Electronic ISSN 1365-2966
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 489
Issue 2
Pages 2830-2843
APA6 Citation Moffett, A. J., Phillipps, S., Robotham, A. S., Driver, S. P., Bremer, M. N., Cortese, L., …van de Sande, J. (2019). Star-forming, rotating spheroidal galaxies in the GAMA and SAMI surveys. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 489(2), 2830-2843.
Keywords Surveys; Galaxies; Dwarf galaxies; Fundamental parameters; Structure
Publisher URL
Additional Information This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2019 The authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


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