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Low Surface Brightness Galaxies in Deep Surveys

  • Henry C. Ferguson (a1)

Abstract

We examine the constraints that can be placed on the space density of low-surface-brightness galaxies from deep HST images. Such images, while covering only a small solid angle, provide enough depth and spatial resolution to detect LSB galaxies at moderate redshift and distinguish them from galaxies of higher surface brightness.

We consider five simple models of the non-evolving or slowly-evolving population of LSB galaxies, motivated by various discussions in the recent literature. The basic results are (1) models with a large space-density of giant LSB galaxies at moderate redshift do not look like the real world and, (2) models with a large space-density of dwarf LSB galaxies are consistent with HST data (that is, they do not produce more faint LSB galaxies per unit solid angle than are detected at magnitudes I ≳ 23), but these LSB dwarf galaxies do not contribute much to faint galaxy counts unless they formed their stars in a rapid burst.

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