AAS 200th meeting, Albuquerque, NM, June 2002
Session 40. Evolution of Galaxies, Galaxy Surveys, IGM
Display, Tuesday, June 4, 2002, 10:00am-6:30pm, SW Exhibit Hall

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[40.12] Interacting/merging pairs in the SDSS EDR

S. S. Allam (NRIAG), D. L. Tucker (Fermilab)

We present, for the first time, a new sample of interacting and merging galaxies obtained through a purely automated systematic search. This new sample of \approx10,000 interacting galaxies and ~400 merging galaxies was extracted from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Early Data Release (SDSS EDR, Stoughton et al. 2002) photometric data and is complete down to a limiting galaxy magnitude of r* = 21.

The algorithm, an implemention of the original Karachentsev (1972) criteria, proved to be very efficient and fast. Subsamples were classified according to separation between the galaxies in each pair: pairs with separations of a galaxy diameter or less were classified as merging, pairs with separations between a galaxy diameter and 3 galaxy diameters were classified as interacting, and pairs with separations between 3 and 20 galaxy diameters were classified as widely separated.

This catalog will be useful for conducting studies of the general characteristics of interacting and merging galaxies, their environments, and their component galaxies. Here we report on our initial test results. SDSS redshifts for a subset of interacting and merging galaxies and their distribution of angular sizes indicate that they provide a much deeper sample than almost any other catalog of galaxy pairs.

We also present a sampler of images for the SDSS EDR pairs obtained using the SDSS EDR images.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: sallam@fnal.gov

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 34
© 2002. The American Astronomical Soceity.