"A Richness Study of 14 Distant X-Ray Clusters from the 160 Square Degree Survey"

Astronomy and Astrophysics – Astrophysics

Scientific paper

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X Rays, Cluster Analysis, Surface Properties, Galaxies, Flux Density, Emission, Luminosity, Populations, Proportional Counters, Red Shift, Rosat Mission, Sensitivity

Scientific paper

We have measured the surface density of galaxies toward 14 X-ray-selected cluster candidates at redshifts zi 0.46, and we show that they are associated with rich galaxy concentrations. These clusters, having X-ray luminosities of Lx(0.5-2 keV) approx. (0.5 - 2.6) x 1044 ergs/ sec are among the most distant and luminous in our 160 deg2 ROSAT Position Sensitive Proportional Counter cluster survey. We find that the clusters range between Abell richness classes 0 and 2 and have a most probable richness class of 1. We compare the richness distribution of our distant clusters to those for three samples of nearby clusters with similar X-ray luminosities. We find that the nearby and distant samples have similar richness distributions, which shows that clusters have apparently not evolved substantially in richness since redshift z=0.5. There is, however, a marginal tendency for the distant clusters to be slightly poorer than nearby clusters, although deeper multicolor data for a large sample would be required to confirm this trend. We compare the distribution of distant X-ray clusters in the LX-richness plane to the distribution of optically selected clusters from the Palomar Distant Cluster Survey. The optically selected clusters appear overly rich for their X-ray luminosities, when compared to X-ray-selected clusters. Apparently, X-ray and optical surveys do not necessarily sample identical mass concentrations at large redshifts. This may indicate the existence of a population of optically rich clusters with anomalously low X-ray emission, More likely, however, it reflects the tendency for optical surveys to select unvirialized mass concentrations, as might be expected when peering along large-scale filaments.

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