AR 14304 (Archival Research)

Sat Jul 20 10:56:27 GMT 2024

Principal Investigator: Mireia Montes
PI Institution: Institut de Ciencies de l'Espai (IEEC-CSIC)
Investigators (xml)

Title: The intra-cluster light as seen by the Hubble Frontier Fields
Cycle: 23

Far from being completely understood, the diffuse component of galaxy clusters is a crucial piece in the puzzle of cluster formation and evolution. Measuring its stellar population properties makes it possible to peer into the past and discern the evolutionary mechanisms of galaxy clusters. Observing this diffuse light, or intra-cluster light (ICL), is challenging as it can only be observed at very low surface brightness (muV > 26 mag/arcsec2). Consequently, our understanding of this light is still at early stages. To perform a major step forward in our understanding of the ICL, we will exploit the HST Frontier Fields (HFF) dataset. The combination of the deepest images of clusters ever taken by the HST with multi-wavelength coverage (particularly in the near-infrared) will allow us to accurately determine the fraction of stellar mass, the age and metallicity of the ICL with unprecedented accuracy in 6 massive galaxy clusters. A comprehensive analysis of the HFF clusters will determine what mechanisms shaped the formation of the ICL and will constrain the assembly epoch of the massive HFF galaxy clusters.