The gravitational lens MG 0414+0534: A link between red galaxies and dust

B. A. McLeod, G. M. Bernstein, M. J. Rieke, D. W. Weedman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


We present near-IR observations of the red gravitational lens system MG 0414+0534. Our images are of sufficient quality to allow photometry of all four QSO images and the lens galaxy. The observations show that the K-band brightnesses of the components are more similar to the radio brightnesses than to the optical and thus support the notion that the system is highly reddened. The differing brightnesses at visible wavelengths are interpreted as variable amounts of extinction in the lens galaxy. The lens galaxy is detected in the K band and is as red as any other known galaxy of comparable apparent magnitude. An estimate of the redshift of the lens galaxy of 0.45 < z < 0.6 is determined from the Faber-Jackson relation and photometric considerations. By extension, we argue that other very red field galaxies may contain large amounts of dust. K-band spectra of the individual components show no difference in the Hα equivalent widths among the components. This is evidence against significant microlensing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1377-1382
Number of pages6
JournalAstronomical Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1998


  • Galaxies: evolution
  • Gravitational lensing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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