Confirmation of small dynamical and stellar masses for extreme emission line galaxies at z ∼ 2

Michael V. Maseda, Arjen Van Der Wel, Elisabete Da Cunha, Hans Walter Rix, Camilla Pacifici, Ivelina Momcheva, Gabriel B. Brammer, Marijn Franx, Pieter Van Dokkum, Eric F. Bell, Mattia Fumagalli, Norman A. Grogin, Dale D. Kocevski, Anton M. Koekemoer, Britt F. Lundgren, Danilo Marchesini, Erica J. Nelson, Shannon G. Patel, Rosalind E. Skelton, Amber N. StraughnJonathan R. Trump, Benjamin J. Weiner, Katherine E. Whitaker, Stijn Wuyts

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Spectroscopic observations from the Large Binocular Telescope and the Very Large Telescope reveal kinematically narrow lines (∼50 km s-1) for a sample of 14 extreme emission line galaxies at redshifts 1.4 < z < 2.3. These measurements imply that the total dynamical masses of these systems are low (≲ 3 × 109 M). Their large [O III] λ 5007 equivalent widths (500-1100 Å) and faint blue continuum emission imply young ages of 10-100 Myr and stellar masses of 10 8-109 M , confirming the presence of a violent starburst. The dynamical masses represent the first such determinations for low-mass galaxies at z > 1. The stellar mass formed in this vigorous starburst phase represents a large fraction of the total (dynamical) mass, without a significantly massive underlying population of older stars. The occurrence of such intense events in shallow potentials strongly suggests that supernova-driven winds must be of critical importance in the subsequent evolution of these systems.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberL22
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 20 2013


  • galaxies: dwarf
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: formation
  • galaxies: high-redshift
  • galaxies: starburst

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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