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 Primordial Helium Abundance: A Reanalysis of the Izotov-Thuan Spectroscopic SampleA reanalysis is made for the helium abundance determination for theIzotov-Thuan spectroscopic sample of extragalactic H II regions. We findthat the effect of underlying stellar absorption of the He I lines,which is more important for metal-poor systems, affects significantlythe inferred primordial helium abundance Yp obtained in thezero-metallicity limit and the slope of linear extrapolation, dY/dZ.This brings Yp from 0.234+/-0.004 to 0.250+/-0.004 anddY/dZ=4.7+/-1.0 to 1.1+/-1.4. Conservatively, this indicates theimportance of the proper understanding of underlying stellar absorptionfor accurate determinations of the primordial helium abundance to theerror of δYp~=0.002-0.004. Infrared Properties of Star-forming Dwarf Galaxies. II. Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies in the Virgo ClusterA sample of 16 blue compact dwarf galaxies (BCDs) in the Virgo Clusterhas been imaged in the near-infrared (NIR) in J and Ks on the2.1 m telescope at the Observatorio Astronómico Nacional in theSierra San Pedro Mártir in Mexico. Isophotes as faint asμJ=24 mag arcsec-2 andμKs=23 mag arcsec-2 have beenreached in most of the targets. Surface brightness profiles can befitted across the whole range of radii by the sum of two components: ahyperbolic secant (sech) function, which is known to fit the lightprofiles of dwarf irregular galaxies (dIs), and a Gaussian component,which quantifies the starburst near the center. Isophotal and totalfitted NIR magnitudes have been calculated, along with semimajor axes atμJ=23 mag arcsec-2 andμKs=22 mag arcsec-2. The diffuseunderlying component and the young starburst have been quantified usingthe profile fitting. Most color profiles show a constant color, betweenJ-Ks=0.7 and 0.9 mag. The diffuse component represents theoverwhelming majority of the NIR light for most BCDs, with the starburstenhancing the flux by less than about 0.3 mag. Linear correlations werefound between the sech scale length and the sech magnitude and betweenthe sech semimajor axis and the sech magnitude. Overall, galaxies withmore luminous diffuse components are larger and brighter in the center.The central burst correlates with the diffuse component, with brighterBCDs having stronger starbursts, suggesting that more massive objectsare forming stars more efficiently. BCDs lie on the fundamentalplane'' defined by dIs in Paper I, following the same relation betweensech absolute magnitude, sech central surface brightness, and thehydrogen line width W20, although the scatter is larger thanfor the dIs. On the other hand, correlations between the sech absolutemagnitude and the sech central surface brightness in Ks forBCDs and dIs are equally good, indicating that BCD line widths may beenhanced by turbulence or winds.These data were acquired at the Observatorio Astronómico Nacionalin the Sierra San Pedro Mártir, Mexico. Comparison of Star Clusters With and Without Wolf-Rayet Stars in Wolf-Rayet GalaxiesWe compare the properties of young star clusters with and withoutWolf-Rayet (W-R) stars in W-R galaxies using optical, near-infraredimagery and optical spectroscopy. Our work identifies the clusters withW-R stars in these galaxies for the first time. With this information,comparisons of clusters with and without W-R stars are now possible,enabling us to understand the chemical and morphological impact ofmassive stars on their environment and to constrain the parameters formodeling these systems. We find that clusters with W-R stars (W-Rclusters) are systematically younger, bluer clusters. Knowing this agedifference between the two cluster sets, we use an evolutionary scenarioto interpret their other properties. Young clusters, typically W-Rclusters, have a Strömgren sphere-like gas configuration. They alsotend to have H-K colors redder than those of theoretical models. Weinterpret the H-K excess as a combination of thermal emission from hotdust, nebular emission, and molecular emission. Older clusters,typically clusters without W-R stars, have ionized gas in a superbubbleconfiguration caused by the prolonged influence of stellar winds andsupernovae. The H-K excess is generally absent for these clusters. Thenitrogen-to-oxygen abundance ratio (N/O) does not appear to increase asa function of age over the first 10 Myr. Systems without W-R stars doappear to have a significant, elevated N/O over systems with W-R starsin the metallicity range 12+log(O/H)=7.7-7.9. For the entire metallicityrange in our sample, this finding is only marginally significant. Weconcur with previous studies, which find no correlation between thesulfur-to-oxygen abundance ratio and metallicity. Palomar/Las Campanas Imaging Atlas of Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies. II. Surface Photometry and the Properties of the Underlying Stellar PopulationWe present the results from an analysis of surface photometry of B, R,and Hα images of a total of 114 nearby galaxies(vhelio<4000 km s-1) drawn from the Palomar/LasCampanas Imaging Atlas of blue compact dwarf (BCD) galaxies. Surfacebrightness and color profiles for the complete sample have beenobtained. We determine the exponential and Sérsic profiles thatbest fit the surface brightness distribution of the underlying stellarpopulation detected in these galaxies. We also compute the (B-R) colorand total absolute magnitude of the underlying stellar population andcompared them to the integrated properties of the galaxies in thesample. Our analysis shows that the (B-R) color of the underlyingpopulation is systematically redder than the integrated color, except inthose galaxies where the integrated colors are strongly contaminated byline and nebular-continuum emission. We also find that galaxies withrelatively red underlying stellar populations [typically (B-R)>=1mag] show structural properties compatible with those of dwarfelliptical galaxies (i.e., a smooth light distribution, fainterextrapolated central surface brightness, and larger scale lengths thanBCD galaxies with blue underlying stellar populations). At least ~15% ofthe galaxies in the sample are compatible with being dwarf elliptical(dE) galaxies experiencing a burst of star formation. For the remainingBCD galaxies in the sample we do not find any correlation between therecent star formation activity and their structural differences withrespect to other types of dwarf galaxies. Optimization of Starburst99 for Intermediate-Age and Old Stellar PopulationsWe have incorporated the latest release of the Padova models into theevolutionary synthesis code Starburst99. The Padova tracks were extendedto include the full asymptotic giant branch (AGB) evolution until thefinal thermal pulse over the mass range 0.9-5 Msolar. Withthis addition, Starburst99 accounts for all stellar phases thatcontribute to the integrated light of a stellar population witharbitrary age from the extreme-ultraviolet to the near-infrared. AGBstars are important for ages between 0.1 and 2 Gyr, with theircontribution increasing at longer wavelengths. We investigatesimilarities and differences between the model predictions by the Genevaand the Padova tracks. The differences are particularly pronounced atages >1 Gyr, when incompleteness sets in for the Geneva models. Wealso perform detailed comparisons with the predictions of other majorsynthesis codes and find excellent agreement. Our synthesized opticalcolors are compared to observations of old, intermediate-age, and youngpopulations. Excellent agreement is found for the old globular clustersystem of NGC 5128 and for old and intermediate-age clusters in NGC4038/4039. In contrast, the models fail for red supergiant-dominatedpopulations with subsolar abundances. This failure can be traced back toincorrect red supergiant parameters in the stellar evolutionary tracks.Our models and the synthesis code are publicly available as version 5.0of Starburst99 at http://www.stsci.edu/science/starburst99. Completing H I observations of galaxies in the Virgo clusterHigh sensitivity (rms noise  0.5 mJy) 21-cm H I line observationswere made of 33 galaxies in the Virgo cluster, using the refurbishedArecibo telescope, which resulted in the detection of 12 objects. Thesedata, combined with the measurements available from the literature,provide the first set of H I data that is complete for all 355 late-type(Sa-Im-BCD) galaxies in the Virgo cluster with mp ≤ 18.0mag. The Virgo cluster H I mass function (HIMF) that was derived forthis optically selected galaxy sample is in agreement with the HIMFderived for the Virgo cluster from the blind HIJASS H I survey and isinconsistent with the Field HIMF. This indicates that both in this richcluster and in the general field, neutral hydrogen is primarilyassociated with late-type galaxies, with marginal contributions fromearly-type galaxies and isolated H I clouds. The inconsistency betweenthe cluster and the field HIMF derives primarily from the difference inthe optical luminosity function of late-type galaxies in the twoenvironments, combined with the HI deficiency that is known to occur ingalaxies in rich clusters.Tables \ref{t1, \ref{sample_dat} and Appendix A are only available inelectronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org Systematic Effects and a New Determination of the Primordial Abundance of 4He and dY/dZ from Observations of Blue Compact GalaxiesWe use spectroscopic observations of a sample of 82 H II regions in 76blue compact galaxies to determine the primordial helium abundanceYp and the slope dY/dZ from the Y-O/H linear regression. Toimprove the accuracy of the dY/dZ measurement, we have included newspectrophotometric observations of 33 H II regions that span a largemetallicity range, with oxygen abundance 12+log(O/H) varying between7.43 and 8.30 (Zsolar/30<=Z<=Zsolar/4). Mostof the new galaxies were selected from the First Byurakan, theHamburg/SAO, and the University of Michigan objective prism surveys. Fora subsample of seven H II regions, we derive the He mass fraction takinginto account known systematic effects, including collisional andfluorescent enhancements of He I emission lines, collisional excitationof hydrogen emission, underlying stellar He I absorption, and thedifference between the temperatures Te(He II) in theHe+ zone and Te(O III) derived from thecollisionally excited [O III] lines. We find that the net result of allthe systematic effects combined is small, changing the He mass fractionby less than 0.6%. By extrapolating the Y versus O/H linear regressionto O/H=0 for seven H II regions of this subsample, we obtainYp=0.2421+/-0.0021 and dY/dO=5.7+/-1.8, which corresponds todY/dZ=3.7+/-1.2, assuming the oxygen mass fraction to be O=0.66Z. In theframework of the standard big bang nucleosynthesis theory, thisYp corresponds toΩbh2=0.012+0.003-0.002,where h is the Hubble constant in units of 100 km s-1Mpc-1. This is smaller at the 2 σ level than the valueobtained from recent deuterium abundance and microwave backgroundradiation measurements. The linear regression slope dY/dO=4.3+/-0.7(corresponding to dY/dZ=2.8+/-0.5) for the whole sample of 82 H IIregions is similar to that derived for the subsample of seven H IIregions, although it has a considerably smaller uncertainty. Tracing the star formation history of cluster galaxies using the Hα/UV flux ratioSince the Hα and UV fluxes from galaxies are sensitive to stellarpopulations of ages <107 and ≈ 108 yrrespectively, their ratio f(Hα)/f(UV) provides us with a tool tostudy the recent t ≤ 108 yr star formation history ofgalaxies, an exercise that we present here applied to 98 galaxies in 4nearby clusters (Virgo, Coma, Abell 1367 and Cancer). The observedf(Hα)/f(UV) ratio is  a factor of two smaller than theexpected one as determined from population synthesis models assuming arealistic delayed, exponentially declining star formation history. Wediscuss various mechanisms that may have affected the observedf(Hα)/f(UV) ratio and we propose that the above discrepancy arisesfrom either the absorption of Lyman continuum photons by dust within thestar formation regions or from the occurrence of star formationepisodes. After splitting our sample into different subsamples accordingto evolutionary criteria we find that our reference sample of galaxiesunaffected by the cluster environment show an average value off(Hα)/f(UV) two times lower than the expected one. We argue thatthis difference must be mostly due to absorption of ≈45% of the Lymancontinuum photons within star forming regions. Galaxies with clear signsof an ongoing interaction show average values of f(Hα)/f(UV)slightly higher than the reference value, as expected if those objectshad SFR increased by a factor of ≃4. The accuracy of the currentUV and Hα photometry is not yet sufficient to clearly disentanglethe effect of interactions on the f(Hα)/f(UV) ratio, butsignificant observational improvements are shortly expected to resultfrom the GALEX mission.Tables 1-3 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org Spectrophotometry of galaxies in the Virgo cluster. II. The dataDrift-scan mode (3600-6800 Å) spectra with 500 Dust emission in the far-infrared as a star formation tracer at z= 0: systematic trends with luminosityWe investigate whether dust emission in the far-infrared (far-IR)continuum provides a robust estimate of the star formation rate (SFR)for a nearby, normal late-type galaxy. We focus on the ratio of the40-1000 μm luminosity (Ldust) to the far-ultraviolet(far-UV) (0.165 μm) luminosity, which is connected to recent episodesof star formation. Available total photometry at 0.165, 60, 100 and 170μm limits the statistics to 30 galaxies, which, however, span a largerange in observed (and, thus, attenuated by dust) K-band (2.2 μm)luminosity, morphology and inclination (i). This sample shows that theratio of Ldust to the observed far-UV luminosity depends notonly on i, as expected, but also on morphology and, in a tighter way, onobserved K-band luminosity. We find thatLdust/LFUV~ e-τK (α+0.62)LK0.62, where LFUV andLK are the unattenuated stellar luminosities in far-UV and K,respectively, and α is the ratio of the attenuation optical depthsat 0.165 μm (τFUV) and 2.2 μm (τK).This relation is to zeroth order independent of i and morphology. It maybe further expressed asLdust/LFUV~LδK, whereδ= 0.61 - 0.02α, under the observationally motivatedassumption that, for an average inclination,e-τK~L-0.02K. We adoptcalculations of two different models of attenuation of stellar light byinternal dust to derive solid-angle-averaged values of α. We findthat δ is positive and decreases towards 0 from the more luminousto the less luminous galaxies. This means that there is no universalratio of far-IR luminosity to unattenuated far-UV luminosity for nearby,normal late-type galaxies. The far-IR luminosity systematicallyoverestimates SFR in more luminous, earlier-type spirals, owing to theincreased fractional contribution to dust heating of optical/near-IRphotons in these objects. Conversely, it systematically underestimatesSFR in fainter, later-type galaxies, the τFUV of which isreduced. The limited statistics and the uncertainty affecting theprevious scaling relations do not allow us to establish quantitativeconclusions, but an analogous analysis making use of larger data sets,available in the near future (e.g. from GALEX, ASTRO-F and SIRTF), andof more advanced models will allow a quantitative test of ourconclusions. Palomar/Las Campanas Imaging Atlas of Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies. I. Images and Integrated PhotometryWe present B, R, and Hα images for a total of 114 nearby galaxies(vhelio<4000 km s-1) that, with exception ofnine objects, are classified as blue compact dwarfs (BCDs). BRintegrated magnitudes, Hα fluxes and Hα equivalent widthsfor all the objects in the sample are presented. A new set ofquantitative, observational criteria for a galaxy to be classified as aBCD is proposed. These criteria include a limit on the K-band luminosity(i.e., stellar mass; MK>-21 mag), peak surface brightness(μB,peak<22 mag arcsec-2), and color at thepeak surface brightness(μB,peak-μR,peak<~1). Hα emissionis detected in all but three sample galaxies. Typical color, absolutemagnitude, and Hα luminosity are (B-R)=0.7+/-0.3 mag,MB=-16.1+/-1.4 mag, and log (LHα)=40.0+/-0.6(ergs s-1). Galaxies morphologically classified as nE and iEBCDs within our sample show lower Hα equivalent widths and reddercolors, on average, than the iI- and i0-type BCDs. For most of thegalaxies the presence of an evolved stellar population is required toexplain their observed properties; only the most metal-poor BCDs (e.g.,I Zw 18, Tol 65) are still compatible with a pure, young burst. Theflux-calibrated and WCS-compliant images in this Atlas are individuallyavailable through the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED) imageserver and collectively through a dedicated Web page. Spectroscopy of Dwarf Galaxies in the Virgo Cluster. I. Data, Chemical Abundances, and Ionization StructureLong-slit spectroscopy has been obtained for a sample of 22 blue dwarfgalaxies selected in the direction of the Virgo Cluster, as part of alarger sample of Virgo blue dwarf galaxies for which deep Hαimaging has been collected. Most of the galaxies in the present sampleare classified as BCDs or dwarf Irregulars in the Virgo Cluster Catalog.Line fluxes, Hβ equivalent widths, extinction coefficients, spatialemission profiles, ionization structure, and physical conditions arepresented for each galaxy. Chemical abundances have been derived eitherusing a direct determination of the electron temperature or afterdetailed examination of the predictions of different abundancecalibrations. The oxygen abundances derived for the sample of Virgodwarf galaxies span the range 7.6<=12+log(O/H)<=8.9, and thecorresponding nitrogen-to-oxygen abundance ratio ranges from valuestypical of low-metallicity field BCD galaxies to near solar. Companions of Bright Barred Shapley-Ames GalaxiesCompanion galaxy environment for a subset of 78 bright and nearby barredgalaxies from the Shapley-Ames Catalog is presented. Among the spiralbarred galaxies, there are Seyfert galaxies, galaxies with circumnuclearstructures, galaxies not associated with any large-scale galaxy cloudstructure, galaxies with peculiar disk morphology (crooked arms), andgalaxies with normal disk morphology; the list includes all Hubbletypes. The companion galaxy list includes the number of companiongalaxies within 20 diameters, their Hubble type, and projectedseparation distance. In addition, the companion environment was searchedfor four known active spiral galaxies, three of them are Seyfertgalaxies, namely, NGC 1068, NGC 1097, and NGC 5548, and one is astarburst galaxy, M82. Among the results obtained, it is noted that theonly spiral barred galaxy classified as Seyfert 1 in our list has nocompanions within a projected distance of 20 diameters; six out of 10Seyfert 2 bar galaxies have no companions within 10 diameters, six outof 10 Seyfert 2 galaxies have one or more companions at projectedseparation distances between 10 and 20 diameters; six out of 12 galaxieswith circumnuclear structures have two or more companions within 20diameters. New insights to the photometric structure of Blue Compact Dwarf galaxies from deep Near-Infrared studies. I. Observations, surface photometry and decomposition of surface brightness profilesWe have analyzed deep Near Infrared (NIR) broad band images for a sampleof Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies (BCDs), observed with the ESO NTT andCalar Alto 3.6 m telescopes. The data presented here allows for thedetection and quantitative study of the extended stellar low-surfacebrightness (LSB) host galaxy in all sample BCDs. NIR surface brightnessprofiles (SBPs) of the LSB host galaxies agree at large galactocentricradii with those from optical studies, showing also an exponentialintensity decrease and compatible scale lengths. At small tointermediate radii (within 1-3 exponential scale lengths), however, theNIR data reveals for more than one half of our sample BCDs evidence fora significant flattening of the exponential profile of the LSBcomponent. Such profiles (type V SBPs, Binggeli & Cameron\cite{binggeli91}) have rarely been detected in the LSB component ofBCDs at optical wavelengths, where the relative flux contribution of thestarburst, being stronger than in the NIR, can readily hide a possiblecentral intensity depression in the underlying LSB host. The structuralproperties, frequency and physical origin of type V LSB profiles in BCDsand dwarf galaxies in general have not yet been subject to systematicstudies. Nevertheless, the occurrence of such profiles in an appreciablefraction of BCDs would impose important new observational constraints tothe radial mass distribution of the stellar LSB component, as well as tothe photometric fading of these systems after the termination ofstar-forming activities. We test the suitability of two empiricalfitting functions, a modified exponential distribution (Papaderos et al.\cite{papaderos96a}) and the Sérsic law, for the systematizationof the structural properties of BCD host galaxies which show a type Vintensity distribution. Either function has been found to satisfactorilyfit a type V distribution. However, it is argued that the practicalapplicability of Sérsic fits to the LSB emission of BCDs islimited by the extreme sensitivity of the achieved solutions to, e.g.,small uncertainties in the sky subtraction and SBP derivation. We findthat most of the sample BCDs show in their stellar LSB host galaxyoptical-NIR colors indicative of an evolved stellar population withsubsolar metallicity. Unsharp-masked NIR maps reveal numerousmorphological details and indicate in some cases, in combination withoptical data, appreciable non-uniform dust absorption on a spatial scaleas large as ~ 1 kpc.European Southern Observatory, program ID 65.N-0318(A).German-Spanish Astronomical Center, Calar Alto, operated by theMax-Planck-Institute for Astronomy, Heidelberg, jointly with the SpanishNational Commission for Astronomy. UV to radio centimetric spectral energy distributions of optically-selected late-type galaxies in the Virgo clusterWe present a multifrequency dataset for an optically-selected,volume-limited, complete sample of 118 late-type galaxies (>=S0a) inthe Virgo cluster. The database includes UV, visible, near-IR, mid-IR,far-IR, radio continuum photometric data as well as spectroscopic dataof Hα , CO and HI lines, homogeneously reduced, obtained from ourown observations or compiled from the literature. Assuming the energybalance between the absorbed stellar light and that radiated in the IRby dust, we calibarte an empirical attenuation law suitable forcorrecting photometric and spectroscopic data of normal galaxies. Thedata, corrected for internal extinction, are used to construct thespectral energy distribution (SED) of each individual galaxy, andcombined to trace the median SED of galaxies in various classes ofmorphological type and luminosity. Low-luminosity, dwarf galaxies haveon average bluer stellar continua and higher far-IR luminosities perunit galaxy mass than giant, early-type spirals. If compared to nearbystarburst galaxies such as M 82 and Arp 220, normal spirals haverelatively similar observed stellar spectra but 10-100 times lower IRluminosities. The temperature of the cold dust component increases withthe far-IR luminosity, from giant spirals to dwarf irregulars. The SEDare used to separate the stellar emission from the dust emission in themid-IR regime. We show that the contribution of the stellar emission at6.75 mu m to the total emission of galaxies is generally important, from~ 80% in Sa to ~ 20% in Sc.Tables 2-5, 7, 8, and Fig. 2 are only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.orgTables 10-12 are only available in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/402/37 1.65-μm (H -band) surface photometry of galaxies - VIII. The near-IR κ space at z =0We present the distribution of a statistical sample of nearby galaxiesin the κ -space (κ 1 ~logM , κ 2~logI e 3 M /L , κ 3 ~logM /L ).Our study is based on near-IR (H -band: λ =1.65μm)observations, for the first time comprising early- and late-typesystems. Our data confirm that the mean effective dynamicalmass-to-light ratio M /L of the E+S0+S0a galaxies increases withincreasing effective dynamical mass M , as expected from the existenceof the Fundamental Plane relation. Conversely, spiral and Im/BCDgalaxies show a broad distribution in M /L with no detected trend of M/L with M , the former galaxies having M /L values about twice largerthan the latter, on average. For all the late-type galaxies, the M /Lincreases with decreasing effective surface intensity I e ,consistent with the existence of the Tully-Fisher relation. Theseresults are discussed on the basis of the assumptions behind theconstruction of the κ -space and their limitations. Our study iscomplementary to a previous investigation in the optical (B -band:λ =0.44μm) and allows us to study wavelength dependences ofthe galaxy distribution in the κ -space. As a first result, wefind that the galaxy distribution in the κ 1 -κ2 plane reproduces the transition from bulgeless tobulge-dominated systems in galaxies of increasing dynamical mass.Conversely, it appears that the M /L of late-types is higher (lower)than that of early-types with the same M in the near-IR (optical). Theorigins of this behaviour are discussed in terms of dust attenuation andstar formation history. Far-Infrared Photometry of a Statistical Sample of Late-Type Virgo Cluster GalaxiesWe present deep diffraction-limited far-infrared (FIR) strip maps of asample of 63 galaxies later than S0 and brighter thanBT=16.8, selected from the Virgo Cluster Catalogue ofBinggeli, Sandage, & Tammann. The ISOPHOT instrument on board theInfrared Space Observatory was used to achieve sensitivities typicallyan order of magnitude deeper than IRAS in the 60 and 100 μm bands andto reach the confusion limit at 170 μm. The averaged 3 σ upperlimits for integrated flux densities of point sources at 60, 100, and170 μm are 43, 33, and 58 mJy, respectively. A total of 63.5% aredetected at all three wavelengths. The highest detection rate (85.7%) isin the 170 μm band. In many cases the galaxies are resolved, allowingthe scale length of the infrared disks to be derived from theoversampled brightness profiles in addition to the spatially integratedemission. The data presented should provide the basis for a variety ofstatistical investigations of the FIR spectral energy distributions ofgas-rich galaxies in the local universe spanning a broad range in starformation activity and morphological types, including dwarf systems andgalaxies with rather quiescent star formation activity. Based onobservations with the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO), an ESA projectwith instruments funded by ESA member states (especially the PIcountries: France, Germany, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom) andwith the participation of ISAS and NASA. Cold Dust in Late-Type Virgo Cluster GalaxiesWe have statistically analyzed the spatially integrated far-infrared(FIR) emissions of the complete volume- and luminosity-limited sample oflate-type (later than S0) Virgo Cluster galaxies measured using theInfrared Space Observatory by Tuffs and coworkers in bands centered on60, 100, and 170 μm. Thirty of 38 galaxies detected at all threewavelengths contain a cold dust emission component, present within allmorphological types of late-type systems ranging from early giant spiralgalaxies to blue compact dwarfs (BCDs) and which could not have beenrecognized by IRAS. We fitted the data with a superposition of twomodified blackbody functions, physically identified with a localizedwarm dust emission component associated with H II regions (whosetemperature was constrained to be 47 K), and a diffuse emissioncomponent of cold dust. The cold dust temperatures were found to bebroadly distributed, with a median of 18 K, some 8-10 K lower than wouldhave been predicted from IRAS. The derived total dust mass iscorrespondingly increased by factors of typically 6-13. A good linearcorrelation is found between the warm FIR'' luminosities and theHα equivalent widths (EWs), supporting the assumptions of ourconstrained spectral energy distribution fit procedure. We also found agood nonlinear correlation between the cold FIR'' luminosities and theHα EWs, consistent with the prediction of Popescu and coworkersthat the FIR-submillimeter emission should mainly be due to diffusenonionizing UV photons. Both the warm'' and the cold'' FIRluminosity components are nonlinearly correlated with the (predominantlynonthermal) radio luminosities. There is a tendency for the temperaturesof the cold dust component to become colder and for the cold dustsurface densities (normalized to optical area) to increase for latermorphological types. A particularly significant result concerns the lowdust temperatures (ranging down to less than 10 K) and large dust massesassociated with the Im and BCD galaxies in our sample. We propose twoscenarios to account for the FIR characteristics of these systems. The Three-dimensional Structure of the Virgo Cluster Region from Tully-Fisher and H I DataThe distances and H I contents of 161 spiral galaxies in the region ofthe Virgo cluster are used to gain insight into the complicatedstructure of this galaxy system. Special attention has been paid to theinvestigation of the suggestion presented in an earlier work that someperipheral Virgo groups may contain strongly gas-deficient spiralgalaxies. The three-dimensional galaxy distribution has been inferredfrom quality distance estimates obtained by averaging distance modulibased on the Tully-Fisher relationship taken from eight published datasets previously homogenized, resulting in a relation with a dispersionof 0.41 mag. Previous findings that the spiral distribution issubstantially more elongated along the line of sight than in the planeof the sky are confirmed by the current data. In addition, an importanteast-west disparity in this effect has been detected. The overallwidth-to-depth ratio of the Virgo cluster region is about 1:4, with themost distant objects concentrated in the western half. The filamentarystructure of the spiral population and its orientation are alsoreflected by the H I-deficient objects alone. The H I deficiency patternshows a central enhancement extending from ~16 to 22 Mpc inline-of-sight distance; most of this enhancement arises from galaxiesthat belong to the Virgo cluster proper. However, significant gasdeficiencies are also detected outside the main body of the cluster in aprobable group of galaxies at line-of-sight distances ~25-30 Mpc, lyingin the region dominated by the southern edge of the M49 subcluster andclouds W' and W, as well as in various foreground galaxies. In the Virgoregion, the H I content of the galaxies then is not a straightforwardindicator of cluster membership. An H I Survey of Actively Star-forming Dwarf GalaxiesWe present the results of H I 21 cm observations of 139 activelystar-forming dwarf galaxies obtained with the 305 m radio telescope atArecibo Observatory. Our sample consists of all objects cataloged inobjective-prism surveys for UV-excess or emission-line galaxiespublished prior to the start of the survey that have luminosities belowMB=-17.0 and that are located within the declination limitsof the Arecibo telescope. Galaxies from the Markarian, Michigan, Case,Wasilewski, Haro, and Zwicky lists are included. The sample spans a widerange of both H I gas content and star formation levels. A total of 122objects (88%) were detected; 82 galaxies have been observed for thefirst time in H I. The median velocity width for our sample is 88 kms-1, and the median H I gas mass is 3.0×108Msolar. In general, the sample galaxies are gas-rich, with anaverage MHI/LB=1.3 after correcting for theluminosity enhancement due to the starburst. The progenitors of many ofthe star-forming dwarfs have higher MHI/LB thantypically seen in samples of nearby normal'' galaxies, emphasizingtheir distinct nature. The UZC-SSRS2 Group CatalogWe apply a friends-of-friends algorithm to the combined Updated ZwickyCatalog and Southern Sky Redshift Survey to construct a catalog of 1168groups of galaxies; 411 of these groups have five or more members withinthe redshift survey. The group catalog covers 4.69 sr, and all groupsexceed the number density contrast threshold, δρ/ρ=80. Wedemonstrate that the groups catalog is homogeneous across the twounderlying redshift surveys; the catalog of groups and their membersthus provides a basis for other statistical studies of the large-scaledistribution of groups and their physical properties. The medianphysical properties of the groups are similar to those for groupsderived from independent surveys, including the ESO Key Programme andthe Las Campanas Redshift Survey. We include tables of groups and theirmembers. Hα surface photometry of galaxies in the Virgo cluster. IV. The current star formation in nearby clusters of galaxiesHα +[NII] imaging observations of 369 late-type (spiral) galaxiesin the Virgo cluster and in the Coma/A1367 supercluster are analyzed,covering 3 rich nearby clusters (A1367, Coma and Virgo) and nearlyisolated galaxies in the Great-Wall. They constitute an opticallyselected sample (mp<16.0) observed with ~ 60 %completeness. These observations provide us with the current(T<107 yrs) star formation properties of galaxies that westudy as a function of the clustercentric projected distances (Theta ).The expected decrease of the star formation rate (SFR), as traced by theHα EW, with decreasing Theta is found only when galaxies brighterthan Mp ~ -19.5 are considered. Fainter objects show no orreverse trends. We also include in our analysis Near Infrared data,providing information on the old (T>109 yrs) stars. Puttogether, the young and the old stellar indicators give the ratio ofcurrently formed stars over the stars formed in the past, orbirthrate'' parameter b. For the considered galaxies we also determinethe global gas content'' combining HI with CO observations. We definethe gas deficiency'' parameter as the logarithmic difference betweenthe gas content of isolated galaxies of a given Hubble type and themeasured gas content. For the isolated objects we find that b decreaseswith increasing NIR luminosity. In other words less massive galaxies arecurrently forming stars at a higher rate than their giant counterpartswhich experienced most of their star formation activity at earliercosmological epochs. The gas-deficient objects, primarily members of theVirgo cluster, have a birthrate significantly lower than the isolatedobjects with normal gas content and of similar NIR luminosity. Thisindicates that the current star formation is regulated by the gaseouscontent of spirals. Whatever mechanism (most plausibly ram-pressurestripping) is responsible for the pattern of gas deficiency observed inspiral galaxies members of rich clusters, it also produces the observedquenching of the current star formation. A significant fraction of gashealthy'' (i.e. with a gas deficiency parameter less than 0.4) andcurrently star forming galaxies is unexpectedly found projected near thecenter of the Virgo cluster. Their average Tully-Fisher distance isfound approximately one magnitude further away (muo = 31.77)than the distance of their gas-deficient counterparts (muo =30.85), suggesting that the gas healthy objects belong to a cloudprojected onto the cluster center, but in fact lying a few Mpc behindVirgo, thus unaffected by the dense IGM of the cluster. Based onobservations taken at the Observatorio Astronómico Nacional(Mexico), the OHP (France), Calar Alto and NOT (Spain) observatories.Table \ref{tab4} is only available in electronic form athttp://www.edpsciences.org Hα surface photometry of galaxies in the Virgo cluster I. Observations with the San Pedro Martir 2.1 m telescopeHα imaging observations of 125 galaxies obtained with the 2.1 mtelescope of the San Pedro Martir Observatory (SPM) (Baja California,Mexico) are presented. The observed galaxies are mostly Virgo clustermembers (77), with 36 objects in the Coma/A1367 supercluster and 12 inthe clusters A2197 and A2199 taken as fillers. Hα +[NII] fluxesand equivalent widths, as well as images of the detected targets arepresented. The observatory of San Pedro Martir (Mexico) belongs to theObservatorio Astronómico Nacional, UNAM. Figure 4 is onlyavailable in electronic form at http://www.edpsciences.org Nearby Optical Galaxies: Selection of the Sample and Identification of GroupsIn this paper we describe the Nearby Optical Galaxy (NOG) sample, whichis a complete, distance-limited (cz<=6000 km s-1) andmagnitude-limited (B<=14) sample of ~7000 optical galaxies. Thesample covers 2/3 (8.27 sr) of the sky (|b|>20deg) andappears to have a good completeness in redshift (97%). We select thesample on the basis of homogenized corrected total blue magnitudes inorder to minimize systematic effects in galaxy sampling. We identify thegroups in this sample by means of both the hierarchical and thepercolation friends-of-friends'' methods. The resulting catalogs ofloose groups appear to be similar and are among the largest catalogs ofgroups currently available. Most of the NOG galaxies (~60%) are found tobe members of galaxy pairs (~580 pairs for a total of ~15% of objects)or groups with at least three members (~500 groups for a total of ~45%of objects). About 40% of galaxies are left ungrouped (field galaxies).We illustrate the main features of the NOG galaxy distribution. Comparedto previous optical and IRAS galaxy samples, the NOG provides a densersampling of the galaxy distribution in the nearby universe. Given itslarge sky coverage, the identification of groups, and its high-densitysampling, the NOG is suited to the analysis of the galaxy density fieldof the nearby universe, especially on small scales. A Spectroscopic Study of a Large Sample Of Wolf-Rayet GalaxiesWe analyze long-slit spectral observations of 39 Wolf-Rayet (WR)galaxies with heavy element mass fraction ranging over 2 orders ofmagnitude, from Zsolar/50 to 2Zsolar. Nearly allgalaxies in our sample show broad WR emission in the blue region of thespectrum (the blue bump) consisting of an unresolved blend of N IIIλ4640, C III λ4650, C IV λ4658, and He IIλ4686 emission lines. Broad C IV λ5808 emission (the redbump) is detected in 30 galaxies. Additionally, weaker WR emission linesare identified, most often the N III λ4512 and Si IIIλ4565 lines, which have very rarely or never been seen anddiscussed before in WR galaxies. These emission features arecharacteristic of WN7-WN8 and WN9-WN11 stars, respectively. We derivethe numbers of early WC (WCE) and late WN (WNL) stars from theluminosities of the red and blue bumps, and the number of O stars fromthe luminosity of the Hβ emission line. Additionally, we propose anew technique for deriving the numbers of WNL stars from the N IIIλ4512 and Si III λ4565 emission lines. This technique ispotentially more precise than the blue-bump method because it does notsuffer from contamination of WCE and early WN (WNE) stars and nebulargaseous emission. It is found that the relative number of WR starsN(WR)/N(O+WR) decreases with decreasing metallicity, in agreement withpredictions of evolutionary synthesis models. The relative number ratiosN(WC)/N(WN) and the equivalent widths of the blue bump EW(λ4650)and of the red bump EW(λ5808) derived from observations are alsoin satisfactory agreement with theoretical predictions, except for themost metal-deficient WR galaxies. A possible source of disagreement istoo low a line emission luminosity adopted for a single WCE star inlow-metallicity models. We assemble a sample of 30 H II regions withdetected He II λ4686 nebular emission to analyze the possibleconnection of this emission with the hard UV radiation of the WR stars.The theoretical predictions satisfactorily reproduce the observedintensities and equivalent widths of the He II λ4686 nebularemission line. However, galaxies with nebular He II λ4686emission do not always show WR emission. Therefore, in addition to theionization of He+ in the H II region by WR stars, othermechanisms for the origin of He II λ4686 such as radiative shocksprobably need to be invoked. 1.65 μm (H-band) surface photometry of galaxies. V. Profile decomposition of 1157 galaxiesWe present near-infrared H-band (1.65 μm) surface brightness profiledecomposition for 1157 galaxies in five nearby clusters of galaxies:Coma, A1367, Virgo, A262 and Cancer, and in the bridge between Coma andA1367 in the Great Wall". The optically selected (mpg≤16.0) sample is representative of all Hubble types, from E to Irr+BCD,except dE and of significantly different environments, spanning fromisolated regions to rich clusters of galaxies. We model the surfacebrightness profiles with a de Vaucouleurs r1/4 law (dV), withan exponential disk law (E), or with a combination of the two (B+D).From the fitted quantities we derive the H band effective surfacebrightness (μe) and radius (re) of each component, theasymptotic magnitude HT and the light concentration indexC31. We find that: i) Less than 50% of the Ellipticalgalaxies have pure dV profiles. The majority of E to Sb galaxies is bestrepresented by a B+D profile. All Scd to BCD galaxies have pureexponential profiles. ii) The type of decomposition is a strong functionof the total H band luminosity (mass), independent of the Hubbleclassification: the fraction of pure exponential decompositionsdecreases with increasing luminosity, that of B+D increases withluminosity. Pure dV profiles are absent in the low luminosity rangeLH<1010 L\odot and become dominantabove 1011 L\odot . Based on observations taken atTIRGO, Gornergrat, Switzerland (operated by CAISMI-CNR, Arcetri,Firenze, Italy) and at the Calar Alto Observatory (operated by theMax-Planck-Institut für Astronomie (Heidelberg) jointly with theSpanish National Commission for Astronomy). Table 2 and Figs. 2, 3, 4are available in their entirety only in electronic form at the CDS viaanonymous ftp to cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html Arcsecond Positions of UGC GalaxiesWe present accurate B1950 and J2000 positions for all confirmed galaxiesin the Uppsala General Catalog (UGC). The positions were measuredvisually from Digitized Sky Survey images with rms uncertaintiesσ<=[(1.2")2+(θ/100)2]1/2,where θ is the major-axis diameter. We compared each galaxymeasured with the original UGC description to ensure high reliability.The full position list is available in the electronic version only. New catalogue of Wolf-Rayet galaxies and high-excitation extra-galactic HII regionsWe present a new compilation of Wolf-Rayet (WR) galaxies andextra-galactic Hii regions showing broad He ii lambda 4686 emissiondrawn from the literature. Relevant information on the presence of otherbroad emission lines ([N i] lambda 5199ii, C iv lambda 5808 and others)from WR stars of WN and WC subtypes, and other existing broad nebularlines is provided. In total we include 139 known WR galaxies. Amongthese, 57 objects show both broad He ii lambda 4686 and C iv lambda 5808features. In addition to the broad (stellar) He ii lambda 4686 emission,a nebular He ii component is well established (suspected) in 44 (54)objects. We find 19 extra-galatic Hii regions without WR detectionsshowing nebular He ii lambda 4686 emission. The present sample can beused for a variety of studies on massive stars, interactions of massivestars with the ISM, stellar populations, starburst galaxies etc. Thedata is accessible electronically and will be updated periodically. Thecatalogue is available at the CDS via anonymous ftp tocdsarc.u-strasbg.fr (130.79.128.5) or viahttp://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/Abstract.html A linear near-IR Tully-Fisher relation for giant and dwarf late-type galaxiesWe present the near-IR (K(') -band, i.e.: lambda = 2.1 ^mu m)Tully-Fisher (TF) relation for a sample of 50 giant and dwarf late-typegalaxies, selected from the Virgo Cluster Catalogue. We find that L ~VMax(4) along a range of 8 K(') -mag for galaxies withdifferent Hubble types (from Sa to Im-BCD), phenomenologies, structures,star-formation histories, masses, dark-to-luminous mass ratios,metallicities and, perhaps, ages. The linearity of the near-IR TFrelation is in contrast with recent determinations of the optical TFrelations for samples of extreme late-type and dwarf galaxies. Thenear-IR TF law is in agreement both with the expectation from theFundamental Plane for disk systems and with the scenario ofself-regulating star-formation in disks. The previous results suggestthat the TF relation reflects the connection between thestructural/dynamical properties and the star-formation process of bothgiant and dwarf late-type galaxies, through a gas supply forstar-formation regulated by the gravitational potential of the galaxy. A Complete Redshift Survey to the Zwicky Catalog Limit in a 2^h X 15 deg Region around 3C 273We compile 1113 redshifts (648 new measurements, 465 from theliterature) for Zwicky catalog galaxies in the region (-3.5d <= delta<= 8.5d, 11h5 <= alpha <= 13h5). We include redshifts for 114component objects in 78 Zwicky catalog multiplets. The redshift surveyin this region is 99.5% complete to the Zwicky catalog limit, m_Zw =15.7. It is 99.9% complete to m_Zw = 15.5, the CfA Redshift Survey(CfA2) magnitude limit. The survey region is adjacent to the northernportion of CfA2, overlaps the northernmost slice of the Las CampanasRedshift Survey, includes the southern extent of the Virgo Cluster, andis roughly centered on the QSO 3C 273. As in other portions of theZwicky catalog, bright and faint galaxies trace the same large-scalestructure.
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