The Swift Grb Host Galaxy Legacy Survey— Ii. Rest-Frame Nir Luminosity Distribution and Evidence for a Near-Solar Metallicity Threshold

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The Swift Grb Host Galaxy Legacy Survey— Ii. Rest-Frame Nir Luminosity Distribution and Evidence for a Near-Solar Metallicity Threshold

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Title: The Swift Grb Host Galaxy Legacy Survey— Ii. Rest-Frame Nir Luminosity Distribution and Evidence for a Near-Solar Metallicity Threshold
Author: Perley, D. A.; Tanvir, N. R.; Hjorth, J.; Laskar, T.; Berger, Edo; Chary, R.; Postigo, A. de Ugarte; Fynbo, J. P. U.; Krühler, T.; Levan, A. J.; Michałowski, M. J.; Schulze, S.

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Citation: Perley, D. A., N. R. Tanvir, J. Hjorth, T. Laskar, E. Berger, R. Chary, A. de Ugarte Postigo, et al. 2016. The Swift Grb Host Galaxy Legacy Survey— Ii. Rest-Frame Nir Luminosity Distribution and Evidence for a Near-Solar Metallicity Threshold. The Astrophysical Journal 817, no. 1: 8. doi:10.3847/0004-637x/817/1/8.
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Abstract: We present rest-frame near-IR (NIR) luminosities and stellar masses for a large and uniformly selected population of gamma-ray burst (GRB) host galaxies using deep Spitzer Space Telescope imaging of 119 targets from the Swift GRB Host Galaxy Legacy Survey spanning 0.03 < z < 6.3, and we determine the effects of galaxy evolution and chemical enrichment on the mass distribution of the GRB host population across cosmic history. We find a rapid increase in the characteristic NIR host luminosity between z ~ 0.5 and z ~ 1.5, but little variation between z ~ 1.5 and z ~ 5. Dust-obscured GRBs dominate the massive host population but are only rarely seen associated with low-mass hosts, indicating that massive star-forming galaxies are universally and (to some extent) homogeneously dusty at high redshift while low-mass star-forming galaxies retain little dust in their interstellar medium. Comparing our luminosity distributions with field surveys and measurements of the high-z mass–metallicity relation, our results have good consistency with a model in which the GRB rate per unit star formation is constant in galaxies with gas-phase metallicity below approximately the solar value but heavily suppressed in more metal-rich environments. This model also naturally explains the previously reported "excess" in the GRB rate beyond z gsim 2; metals stifle GRB production in most galaxies at z < 1.5 but have only minor impact at higher redshifts. The metallicity threshold we infer is much higher than predicted by single-star models and favors a binary progenitor. Our observations also constrain the fraction of cosmic star formation in low-mass galaxies undetectable to Spitzer to be small at z < 4.
Published Version: doi:10.3847/0004-637X/817/1/8
Other Sources: https://arxiv.org/pdf/1504.02479.pdf
Terms of Use: This article is made available under the terms and conditions applicable to Open Access Policy Articles, as set forth at http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:dash.current.terms-of-use#OAP
Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:30498454
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