Evidence for strong evolution in galaxy environmental quenching efficiency between z = 1.6 and z = 0.9

Julie B. Nantais, Adam Muzzin, Remco F.J. van der Burg, Gillian Wilson, Chris Lidman, Ryan Foltz, Andrew DeGroot, Allison Noble, Michael C. Cooper, Ricardo Javier Demarco López

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

65 Citations (Scopus)


We analyse the evolution of environmental quenching efficiency, the fraction of quenched cluster galaxies which would be star forming if they were in the field, as a function of redshift in 14 spectroscopically confirmed galaxy clusters with 0.87 < z < 1.63 from the Spitzer Adaptation of the Red-Sequence Cluster Survey. The clusters are the richest in the survey at each redshift. Passive fractions rise from 42-13 +10 per cent at z ~ 1.6 to 80-9 +12 per cent at z ~ 1.3 and 88-3 +4 per cent at z < 1.1, outpacing the change in passive fraction in the field. Environmental quenching efficiency rises dramatically from 16-19 +15 per cent at z ~ 1.6 to 62-15 +21 per cent at z~1.3 and 73-7 +8 per cent at z ≲ 1.1. This work is the first to show direct observational evidence for a rapid increase in the strength of environmental quenching in galaxy clusters at z ~ 1.5, where simulations show cluster-mass haloes undergo non-linear collapse and virialization.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)L104-L108
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society: Letters
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Feb 2017


  • Galaxies: clusters: general
  • Galaxies: evolution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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