AAS 206th Meeting, 29 May - 2 June 2005
Session 12 Dwarf Irregular and Starburst Galaxies
Poster, Monday, 9:20am-6:30pm, Tuesday, 10:00am-7:00pm, May 30, 2005, Ballroom A

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[12.10] Star Formation in Dwarf Irregular Galaxies: Does Environment Matter?

J. M. Dunn, P. M. Marcum (TCU), M. N. Fanelli (UNT / TCU)

Dwarf irregular galaxies (dIs), being low mass systems, are ideal objects for studying the effects of nearby galaxy neighbors on star formation since: (a) the gas distribution of dIs can be more easily modified through external perturbations as compared to that within the dIsí larger counterparts, and (b) dIs lack complicating structures such as spiral arms. Unlike in the case of larger disk dominated systems, no systematic trend has been observed between galaxy proximity and enhanced star formation. Several studies have revealed no substantial difference among the star formation histories of field and group / cluster dIs, while others have found that star formation is enhanced in field dIs. In our study, we are comparing the star formation histories and evolution of 36 dwarf irregular galaxies that reside in either low or high density environments having nearest neighbor distances of at least 1 Mpc and less than 250 kpc, respectively.

To date, we have obtained U, B, V, R, I and H\alpha images for 22 galaxies. We will discuss modeled fits to the radial surface brightness profiles and the spatial distribution of stellar populations using B-V color maps and H\alpha images.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: j.m.kerley@tcu.edu

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #2
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.