The LABOCA survey of the Extended Chandra Deep Field-South:Clustering of submillimetre galaxies

Hickox, Ryan C. and Wardlow, J. L. and Smail, Ian and Myers, A. D. and Alexander, D. M. and Swinbank, A. M. and Danielson, A. L R and Stott, J. P. and Chapman, S. C. and Coppin, K. E K and Dunlop, J. S. and Gawiser, E. and Lutz, D. and van der Werf, P. and Weiß, A. (2012) The LABOCA survey of the Extended Chandra Deep Field-South:Clustering of submillimetre galaxies. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 421 (1). pp. 284-295. ISSN 0035-8711

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We present a measurement of the spatial clustering of submillimetre galaxies (SMGs) at z= 1-3. Using data from the 870μm Large APEX Bolometer Camera (LABOCA) submillimetre survey of the Extended Chandra Deep Field-South, we employ a novel technique to measure the cross-correlation between SMGs and galaxies, accounting for the full probability distributions for photometric redshifts of the galaxies. From the observed projected two-point cross-correlation function we derive the linear bias and characteristic dark matter halo masses for the SMGs. We detect clustering in the cross-correlation between SMGs and galaxies at the >4σ level. Accounting for the clustering of galaxies from their autocorrelation function, we estimate an autocorrelation length for SMGs of r o = 7.7 -2.3 +1.8 h -1 Mpc assuming a power-law slope γ= 1.8, and derive a corresponding dark matter halo mass of log(M halo[h -1M ⊙]) = 12.8 -0.5 +0.3. Based on the evolution of dark matter haloes derived from simulations, we show that that the z= 0 descendants of SMGs are typically massive (~2-3L *) elliptical galaxies residing in moderate- to high-mass groups (log(M halo[h -1M ⊙]) = 13.3 -0.5 +0.3). From the observed clustering we estimate an SMG lifetime of ~100Myr, consistent with lifetimes derived from gas consumption times and star formation time-scales, although with considerable uncertainties. The clustering of SMGs at z~ 2 is consistent with measurements for optically selected quasi-stellar objects (QSOs), supporting evolutionary scenarios in which powerful starbursts and QSOs occur in the same systems. Given that SMGs reside in haloes of characteristic mass ~6 × 10 12h -1M ⊙, we demonstrate that the redshift distribution of SMGs can be described remarkably well by the combination of two effects: the cosmological growth of structure and the evolution of the molecular gas fraction in galaxies. We conclude that the powerful starbursts in SMGs likely represent a short-lived but universal phase in massive galaxy evolution, associated with the transition between cold gas-rich, star-forming galaxies and passively evolving systems.

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Journal Article
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Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
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17 Jan 2017 14:56
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19 Jan 2021 12:29