Maximum likelihood method for fitting the Fundamental Plane of the 6dF Galaxy Survey

Christina Magoulas, Matthew Malcolm Colless, D. Jones, Christopher Springob, Jeremy Mould

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We have used over 10,000 early-type galaxies from the 6dF Galaxy Survey (6dFGS) to construct the Fundamental Plane across the optical and near-infrared passbands. We demonstrate that a maximum likelihood fit to a multivariate Gaussian model for the distribution of galaxies in size, surface brightness and velocity dispersion can properly account for selection effects, censoring and observational errors, leading to precise and unbiased parameters for the Fundamental Plane and its intrinsic scatter. This method allows an accurate and robust determination of the dependencies of the Fundamental Plane on variations in the stellar populations and environment of early-type galaxies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)376-378
Number of pages3
JournalProceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Issue numberS262
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Galaxies: distance and redshifts
  • Large-scale structure of Universe
  • Surveys

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