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Date and Time of the Query: 2019-06-18 T04:41:18 PDT
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For refcode 1995A&A...295..335C:
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Copyright by European Southern Observatory (ESO). Reproduced by permission
1995A&A...295..335C A generalized Schmidt star formation law: observational constraints R. Caimmi Dipartimento di Astronomia, Vicolo Osservatorio 5, I-35122 Padova, Italy Received 2 June 1993/Accepted 13 August 1994 Abstract. This paper aims to see whether a generalized Schmidt star formation law is consistent with observations in the light of a closed, comoving model of chemical evolution, where two main phases occurred: contraction (extended component) and equilibrium (flat component). It is shown that the empirical relation between present-day gas mass which is being turned into stars and gas mass, M_ga_ is proportional to M_ga_, i.e. a linear correlation between the model present-day star formation rate and gas mass fraction, C_D_ is proportional to {mu}_a_ yields a connection between the ratio of contraction time to age, T_C_/T, and {mu}{alpha}. The comparison between model predictions and observations leads to the following main conclusions: (i) models where star formation obeys a pure Schmidt law cannot fit the whole set of observations; (ii) if we demand (in dealing with an averaged C_D_/{mu}_{alpha}_) T_c_/T > 0 for all the galaxies and T_c_/T < 0.5 for at least a fraction of large- mass (M > 10^11^ m_sun_) galaxies of the sample considered, then a generalized Schmidt star formation law with an exponent n~1 is preferred in respect to n~2; (iii) if contraction and equilibrium phase were characterized by different star formation rates and mass spectra, then a correlation exists between present-day metal content and gas mass fraction. Thus a generalized Schmidt star formation law with exponent n ~ 1 appears to be consistent with observations. Key words: galaxies: evolution; abundances - stars: formation; evolution
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