Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 385, 1535-1560 (2008/April-2)
A comparison of optical and near-infrared colours of Magellanic Cloud star clusters with predictions of simple stellar population models.
PESSEV P.M., GOUDFROOIJ P., PUZIA T.H. and CHANDAR R.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present integrated JHKSTwo-Micron All-Sky Survey photometry and a compilation of integrated-light optical photoelectric measurements for 84 star clusters in the Magellanic Clouds. These clusters range in age from ∼200 Myr to >10 Gyr, and have [Fe/H] values from -2.2 to -0.1 dex. We find a spread in the intrinsic colours of clusters with similar ages and metallicities, at least some of which is due to stochastic fluctuations in the number of bright stars residing in low-mass clusters. We use 54 clusters with the most-reliable age and metallicity estimates as test particles to evaluate the performance of four widely used simple stellar population models in the optical/near-infrared (near-IR) colour-colour space. All models reproduce the reddening-corrected colours of the old (≥10 Gyr) globular clusters quite well, but model performance varies at younger ages. In order to account for the effects of stochastic fluctuations in individual clusters, we provide composite B - V, B - J, V - J, V - KS and J - KScolours for Magellanic Cloud clusters in several different age intervals. The accumulated masses for most composite clusters are higher than that needed to keep luminosity variations due to stochastic fluctuations below the 10 per cent level. The colours of the composite clusters are clearly distinct in optical-near-IR colour-colour space for the following intervals of age: >10 Gyr, 2-9 Gyr, 1-2 Gyr, and 200 Myr-1 Gyr. This suggests that a combination of optical plus near-IR colours can be used to differentiate clusters of different age and metallicity.
©2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 RAS
techniques: photometric - Magellanic Clouds - galaxies: star clusters - infrared: general
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