MIGHTEE-HI: discovery of an HI-rich galaxy group at z = 0.044 with MeerKAT
MetadataShow full item record
We present the serendipitous discovery of a galaxy group in the XMM-LSS field with MIGHTEE Early Science observations. 20 galaxies are detected in HI in this z ∼ 0.044 group, with a 3σ column density sensitivity of NHI = 1.6 × 1020 cm−2. This group has not been previously identified, despite residing in a well-studied extragalactic legacy field. We present spatially resolved HI total intensity and velocity maps for each of the objects which reveal environmental influence through disturbed morphologies. The group has a dynamical mass of log10(Mdyn/M ) = 12.32, and is unusually gas-rich, with an HI-to-stellar mass ratio of log10 (f∗HI) = −0.2, which is 0.7 dex greater than expected. The group’s high HI content, spatial, velocity, and identified galaxy type distributions strongly suggest that it is in the early stages of its assembly. The discovery of this galaxy group is an example of the importance of mapping spatially resolved HI in a wide range of environments, including galaxy groups. This scientific goal has been dramatically enhanced by the high sensitivity, large field-of-view, and wide instantaneous bandwidth of the MeerKAT telescope.