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For refcode 1998AJ....115.1462M:
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Copyright by American Astronomical Society. Reproduced by permission
1998AJ....115.1462M THE STAR FORMATION HISTORY OF THE LOCAL GROUP DWARF ELLIPTICAL GALAXY NGC 185. I. STELLAR CONTENT D. MARTINEZ-DELGADO AND A. APARICIO Instituto de Astrofisica de Canarias, Via Lactea, E-38200 La Laguna, Tenerife, Canary Islands, Spain; ddelgado@iac.es, aaj@iac.es Received 1997 November 12 ABSTRACT We present VI CCD photometry of ~16,000 stars in a 7.2' x 7.2' field of the Local Group dwarf elliptical galaxy NGC 185. The resulting VI color-magnitude diagram reveals a dominant red giant branch population, an important number of luminous red stars located above the tip of the red giant branch, and a number of blue and yellow stars. Besides the nucleus, our field also covers a large, less crowded area of the galaxy. We show color-magnitude diagrams at six different distances from the nucleus. The red giant branch becomes substantially narrower at larger distances from the nucleus, while the photometry gets deeper. In this paper, we concentrate on investigating the contribution of the observational effects (mainly crowding) to this observed gradient. Although we cannot rule out here the possibility that this trend partially originates in a gradient of the characteristics of the stellar populations of the galaxy with radius, we show that a strong radial gradient exists in the observational effects that can mimic a gradient in the real properties (e.g., age, metallicity) of the stellar population. A distance modulus of m - M = 23.95 +/- 0.10 has been obtained from the tip of the red giant branch, in good agreement with previous estimates. The average stellar metallicity is estimated to be [Fe/H] = -1.43 +/- 0.15, and decreases for increasing galactocentric distance. Key words: galaxies: dwarf-galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD - galaxies: individual (NGC 185)-galaxies: stellar content -Local Group
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