The SLUGGS Survey: Wide-Field Stellar Kinematics of Early-Type Galaxies

We present stellar kinematics of 22 nearby early-type galaxies (ETGs), based on two-dimensional (2D) absorption line stellar spectroscopy out to ~2-4 R_e (effective radii), as part of the ongoing SLUGGS survey. The galaxies span a factor of 20 in intrinsic luminosity, as well as a full range of environment and ETG morphology. Our data consist of good velocity resolution sigma_inst ~ 25 km/s integrated stellar-light spectra extracted from the individual slitlets of custom made Keck/DEIMOS slitmasks. We extract stellar kinematics measurements (V, sigma, h_3, and h_4) for each galaxy. Combining with literature values from smaller radii we present 2D spatially resolved maps of the large-scale kinematic structure in each galaxy. We find that the kinematic homogeneity found inside 1 R_e often breaks down at larger radii, where a variety of kinematic behaviors are observed. While central slow rotators remain slowly rotating in their halos, central fast rotators show more diversity, ranging from rapidly increasing to rapidly declining specific angular momentum profiles in the outer regions. There are indications that the outer trends depend on morphological type, and we suggest that the apparent unification of the elliptical and lenticular (S0) galaxy families in the ATLAS^3D survey may be a consequence of a limited field of view. Several galaxies in our sample show multiple lines of evidence for distinct disk components embedded in more slowly rotating spheroids, and we suggest a joint photometric-kinematic approach for robust bulge-disk decomposition. Our observational results appear generally consistent with a picture of two-phase (in-situ plus accretion) galaxy formation.

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Date added: Fri, 11 Oct 13