The Baryonic Collapse Efficiency of Galaxy Groups in the RESOLVE and ECO Surveys

Eckert, Kathleen, D, Kannappan, Sheila, J, Lagos, Claudio del P., Baker, Ashley, D, Berlind, Andreas, A, Stark, David, V, Moffett, Amanda, J, Nasipak, Zachary and Norris, Mark, A orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7001-805X (2017) The Baryonic Collapse Efficiency of Galaxy Groups in the RESOLVE and ECO Surveys. The Astrophysical Journal, 849 (1). ISSN 0004-637X

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We examine the z = 0 group-integrated stellar and cold baryonic (stars + cold atomic gas) mass functions (group SMF and CBMF) and the baryonic collapse efficiency (group cold baryonic to dark matter halo mass ratio) using the RESOLVE and ECO survey galaxy group catalogs and a galform semi-analytic model (SAM) mock catalog. The group SMF and CBMF fall off more steeply at high masses and rise with a shallower low-mass slope than the theoretical halo mass function (HMF). The transition occurs at group-integrated cold baryonic mass M_coldbary ~ 10^11 Msun. The SAM, however, has significantly fewer groups at the transition mass ~ 10^11 Msun and a steeper low-mass slope than the data, suggesting that feedback is too weak in low-mass halos and conversely too strong near the transition mass. Using literature prescriptions to include hot halo gas and potential unobservable galaxy gas produces a group BMF with slope similar to the HMF even below the transition mass. Its normalization is lower by a factor of ~2, in agreement with estimates of warm-hot gas making up the remaining difference. We compute baryonic collapse efficiency with the halo mass calculated two ways, via halo abundance matching (HAM) and via dynamics (extended all the way to three-galaxy groups using stacking). Using HAM, we find that baryonic collapse efficiencies reach a flat maximum for groups across the halo mass range of M_halo ~ 10^11.4-12 Msun, which we label "nascent groups." Using dynamics, however, we find greater scatter in baryonic collapse efficiencies, likely indicating variation in group hot-to-cold baryon ratios. Similarly, we see higher scatter in baryonic collapse efficiencies in the SAM when using its true groups and their group halo masses as opposed to friends-of-friends groups and HAM masses.

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