We update the spectral modeling code MAGPHYS to include a 2175 Å absorption feature in its UV to near-IR dust attenuation prescription. This allows us to determine the strength of this feature and the shape of the dust attenuation curve in ∼5000 star-forming galaxies at $0.1\lt z\lesssim 3$ in the COSMOS field. We find that a 2175 Å absorption feature of ∼1/3 the strength of that in the Milky Way is required for models to minimize residuals. We characterize the total effective dust attenuation curves as a function of several galaxy properties and find that the UV slopes of the attenuation curve for COSMOS galaxies show a strong dependence on star formation rate (SFR) and total dust attenuation (AV), such that galaxies with higher SFR and AV have shallower curves and vice versa. These results are consistent with expectations from radiative transfer that attenuation curves become shallower as the effective dust optical depth increases. We do not find significant trends in the strength of the 2175 Å absorption feature as a function of galaxy properties, but this may result from the high uncertainties associated with this measurement. The updated code is publicly available online (following acceptance).
The Astrophysical Journal
- Pub Date:
- January 2020
- Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies
- 20 pages, 10 figures, 2 tables. Accepted for publication in ApJ. The updated MAGPHYS highz code can be downloaded at http://www.iap.fr/magphys/download.html