Mass-to-light ratio gradients in early-type galaxy haloes

Napolitano, N. R. ; Capaccioli, M. ; Romanowsky, A. J. ; Douglas, N. G. ; Merrifield, M. R. ; Kuijken, K. ; Arnaboldi, M. ; Gerhard, O. ; Freeman, K. C.

In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 2005, vol. 357, no. 2, p. 691-706

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    Owing to the fact that the near future should see a rapidly expanding set of probes of the halo masses of individual early-type galaxies, we introduce a convenient parameter for characterizing the halo masses from both observational and theoretical results: ∇ℓϒ, the logarithmic radial gradient of the mass-to-light ratio. Using halo density profiles from Λ-cold dark matter (CDM) simulations, we derive predictions for this gradient for various galaxy luminosities and star formation efficiencies εSF. As a pilot study, we assemble the available ∇ℓϒ data from kinematics in early-type galaxies - representing the first unbiased study of halo masses in a wide range of early-type galaxy luminosities - and find a correlation between luminosity and ∇ℓϒ, such that the brightest galaxies appear the most dark-matter dominated. We find that the gradients in most of the brightest galaxies may fit in well with the ΛCDM predictions, but that there is also a population of fainter galaxies whose gradients are so low as to imply an unreasonably high star formation efficiency εSF > 1. This difficulty is eased if dark haloes are not assumed to have the standard ΛCDM profiles, but lower central concentrations