A CANDELS-3D-HST synergy: Resolved Star Formation Patterns at 0.7 lt z lt 1.5

S. Wuyts, N. M. Förster Schreiber, E. J. Nelson, P. G. van Dokkum, G. Brammer, Y.-Y. Chang, S. M. Faber, H. C. Ferguson, M. Franx, M. Fumagalli, R. Genzel, N. A. Grogin, D. D. Kocevski, A. M. Koekemoer, B. Lundgren, D. Lutz, E. J. McGrath, I. Momcheva, D. Rosario, R. E. SkeltonL. J. Tacconi, A. van der Wel, K. E. Whitaker

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206 Citations (SciVal)


We analyze the resolved stellar populations of 473 massive star-forming galaxies at 0.7 < z < 1.5, with multi-wavelength broadband imaging from CANDELS and Hα surface brightness profiles at the same kiloparsec resolution from 3D-HST. Together, this unique data set sheds light on how the assembled stellar mass is distributed within galaxies, and where new stars are being formed. We find the Hα morphologies to resemble more closely those observed in the ACS I band than in the WFC3 H band, especially for the larger systems. We next derive a novel prescription for Hα dust corrections, which accounts for extra extinction toward H II regions. The prescription leads to consistent star formation rate (SFR) estimates and reproduces the observed relation between the Hα/UV luminosity ratio and visual extinction, on both a pixel-by-pixel and a galaxy-integrated level. We find the surface density of star formation to correlate with the surface density of assembled stellar mass for spatially resolved regions within galaxies, akin to the so-called "main sequence of star formation" established on a galaxy-integrated level. Deviations from this relation toward lower equivalent widths are found in the inner regions of galaxies. Clumps and spiral features, on the other hand, are associated with enhanced Hα equivalent widths, bluer colors, and higher specific SFRs compared to the underlying disk. Their Hα/UV luminosity ratio is lower than that of the underlying disk, suggesting that the ACS clump selection preferentially picks up those regions of elevated star formation activity that are the least obscured by dust. Our analysis emphasizes that monochromatic studies of galaxy structure can be severely limited by mass-to-light ratio variations due to dust and spatially inhomogeneous star formation histories.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)135
Number of pages1
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Early online date3 Dec 2013
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2013


  • galaxies: high-redshift
  • galaxies: stellar content
  • galaxies: strucutre
  • stars: formation


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