The Fundamental Plane of Massive Quiescent Galaxies at z similar to 2

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We examine the Fundamental Plane (FP) and mass-to-light ratio (M/L) scaling relations using the largest sample of massive quiescent galaxies at 1.5 z <2.5 to date. The FP (r(e), sigma(e), I-e) is established using 19 UVJ quiescent galaxies from COSMOS with Hubble Space Telescope H-F160W rest-frame optical sizes and X-shooter absorption line-measured stellar velocity dispersions. For a very massive, log (M-*/M-circle dot) >11.26, subset of eight quiescent galaxies at z > 2, from Stockmann et al., we show that they cannot passively evolve to the local Coma cluster relation alone and must undergo significant structural evolution to mimic the sizes of local massive galaxies. The evolution of the FP and M/L scaling relations, from z = 2 to present day, for this subset are consistent with passive aging of the stellar population and minor merger structural evolution into the most massive galaxies in the Coma cluster and other massive elliptical galaxies from the MASSIVE Survey. Modeling the luminosity evolution from minor merger-added stellar populations favors a history of merging with "dry" quiescent galaxies.

Original languageEnglish
Article number135
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Number of pages13
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2021

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