The Early-Type Dwarf-to-Giant Ratio and Substructure in the Coma Cluster Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • We have obtained new CCD photometry for a sample of $\simeq 800$ early-type galaxies (dwarf and giant ellipticals) in the central 700 arcmin$^2$ of the Coma cluster, complete in color and in magnitude to $R = 22.5$ mag ($M_R \simeq -12$ mag for $H_0 = 86$ km/sec/Mpc). The composite luminosity function for all galaxies in the cluster core (excluding NGC 4874 and NGC 4889) is modeled as the sum of a Gaussian distribution for the giant galaxies and a Schechter function for the dwarf elliptical galaxies. We determine that the early-type dwarf-to-giant ratio (EDGR) for Coma is identical to that measured for the less rich Virgo cluster; i.e., the EDGR does not increase as predicted by the EDGR-richness correlation. We postulate that the presence of substructure is an important factor in determining the cluster's EDGR; that is, the EDGR for Coma is consistent with the Coma cluster being built up from the merger of multiple less-rich galaxy clusters.

publication date

  • October 1996