Galaxy halo truncation and giant ARC surface brightness reconstruction in the cluster MACSJ1206.2-0847

Thomas Eichner, Stella Seitz, Sherry H. Suyu, Aleksi Halkola, Keiichi Umetsu, Adi Zitrin, Dan Coe, Anna Monna, Piero Rosati, Claudio Grillo, Italo Balestra, Marc Postman, Anton Koekemoer, Wei Zheng, Ole Høst, Doron Lemze, Tom Broadhurst, Leonidas Moustakas, Larry Bradley, Alberto MolinoMario Nonino, Amata Mercurio, Marco Scodeggio, Matthias Bartelmann, Narciso Benitez, Rychard Bouwens, Megan Donahue, Leopoldo Infante, Stephanie Jouvel, Daniel Kelson, Ofer Lahav, Elinor Medezinski, Peter Melchior, Julian Merten, Adam Riess

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


In this work, we analyze the mass distribution of MACSJ1206.2-0847, particularly focusing on the halo properties of its cluster members. The cluster appears relaxed in its X-ray emission, but has a significant amount of intracluster light that is not centrally concentrated, suggesting that galaxy-scale interactions are still ongoing despite the overall relaxed state. The cluster lenses 12 background galaxies into multiple images and one galaxy at z = 1.033 into a giant arc and its counterimage. The multiple image positions and the surface brightness (SFB) distribution of the arc, which is bent around several cluster members, are sensitive to the cluster galaxy halo properties. We model the cluster mass distribution with a Navarro-Frenk-White profile and the galaxy halos with two parameters for the mass normalization and the extent of a reference halo assuming scalings with their observed near-infrared light. We match the multiple image positions at an rms level of 0.″85 and can reconstruct the SFB distribution of the arc in several filters to a remarkable accuracy based on this cluster model. The length scale where the enclosed galaxy halo mass is best constrained is about 5 effective radii - a scale in between those accessible to dynamical and field strong-lensing mass estimates on the one hand and galaxy-galaxy weak-lensing results on the other hand. The velocity dispersion and halo size of a galaxy with m 160W, AB = 19.2 and M B, Vega = -20.7 are σ = 150 km s-1 and r ≈ 26 ± 6 kpc, respectively, indicating that the halos of the cluster galaxies are tidally stripped. We also reconstruct the unlensed source, which is smaller by a factor of ∼5.8 in area, demonstrating the increase in morphological information due to lensing. We conclude that this galaxy likely has star-forming spiral arms with a red (older) central component.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number124
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - 10 Sep 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • galaxies: clusters: individual (MACSJ1206.2-0847)
  • galaxies: elliptical and lenticular, cD
  • galaxies: halos
  • galaxies: interactions
  • gravitational lensing: strong

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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