The Messenger Astronomical Science

A First Spectroscopic Census of the Dwarf Galaxy Leo P

  • Evans, Chris [UKATC/STFC, Edinburgh, UK]
  • Castro, Norberto [University of Michigan, USA; Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam, 
  • Gonzalez, Oscar [UKATC/STFC, Edinburgh, UK]
  • Garcia, Miriam [Centro de Astrobiología (CSIC-INTA), Madrid, Spain]
  • Bastian, Nate [Liverpool John Moores University, UK]
  • Cioni, Maria-Rosa [Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam, 
  • Clark, Simon [Open University, Milton Keynes, UK]
  • Davies, Ben [Liverpool John Moores University, UK]
  • Ferguson, Annette [Institute for Astronomy, University of Edinburgh, UK]
  • Kamann, Sebastian [Liverpool John Moores University, UK]
  • Lennon, Danny [ESAC, ESA, Madrid, Spain; IAC, Tenerife, Spain]
  • Patrick, Lee [UKATC/STFC, Edinburgh, UK; IAC, Tenerife, Spain]
  • Vink, Jorick S. [Armagh Observatory, UK]
  • Weisz, Dan [University of California Berkeley, USA]

Astronomical Science

A longstanding quest in studies of luminous, massive stars has been to understand the role of environment on their evolution. The abundance of metals in their atmospheres has a significant impact on their physical properties, strongly influencing the feedback they have on their surroundings and the nature of their explosive deaths. To date we have been unable to study massive stars with metallicities below 10% that of the Sun. The low oxygen abundance (3% solar) and relative proximity (~1.6 Mpc) of Leo P, a low-luminosity dwarf galaxy discovered in 2013, provides a tantalising opportunity to investigate massive stars with near-primordial compositions. Here we introduce observations of Leo P with the Multi Unit Spectroscopic Explorer (MUSE) instrument on the VLT, which have revealed its spectroscopic content for the first time.

Created: 2018-12-01/2018-12-31
4 pages

Cite this article:

C. Evans, N. Castro, O. Gonzalez, M. Garcia, N. Bastian, M. Cioni, S. Clark, B. Davies, A. Ferguson, S. Kamann, D. Lennon, L. Patrick, J. Vink, D. Weisz; A First Spectroscopic Census of the Dwarf Galaxy Leo P. The Messenger 174 (December 2018): 24–27.