AAS 205th Meeting, 9-13 January 2005
Session 94 From Protogalaxies to Large Surveys: Tracing the Galaxy Evolution
Poster, Wednesday, January 12, 2005, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[94.13] A Strategy Guide for Integral-Field Specroscopy of z ~ 2 - 3 Galaxies

D. R. Law, C. C. Steidel, D. K. Erb, N. A. Reddy (Caltech)

We present the results of a projected-performance analysis of OSIRIS, a new integral-field spectrograph designed for use with the Keck telescope adaptive optics (AO) system. Using HST-ACS morphological data and Keck-NIRSPEC spectroscopy, we estimate optimal integration times for detection of H\alpha emission from photometrically selected z ~ 2 - 3 star-forming galaxies in the GOODS-N field using each of three available spatial sampling scales. We present spatial maps of the expected H\alpha line S/N ratio of these sources and discuss to what extent it will be possible to balance spatial resolution and detection strength and use OSIRIS to measure velocity substructure in these morphologically irregular galaxies. Such measurements could prove invaluable in understanding the physical processes that govern the evolution of these galaxies by discriminating between disk-like rotation and merging. Finally, we extend our discussion to consider the scientific goals achievable in the future using integral-field spectroscopy in combination with AO-capable 30m class telescopes.

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© 2004. The American Astronomical Society.