Radio emission and active galactic nucleus feedback in post-starburst galaxies

Min Su Shin, Michael A. Strauss, Rita Tojeiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


We investigate radio-mode AGN activity among post-starburst galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) to determine whether AGN feedback may be responsible for the cessation of star formation. Based on radio morphology and radio loudness from the FIRST and NVSS data, we separate objects with radio activity due to an AGN from ongoing residual star formation. Of 513 SDSS galaxies with strong A-star spectra, 12 objects have 21-cm flux density above 1mJy. These galaxies do not show optical AGN emission lines. Considering that the lifetime of radio emission is much shorter than the typical time-scale of the spectroscopic features of post-starburst galaxies, we conclude that the radio-emitting AGN activity in these objects was triggered after the end of the recent starburst, and thus cannot be an important feedback process to explain the post-starburst phase. The radio luminosities show a positive correlation with total galaxy stellar mass, but not with the mass of recently formed stars. Thus the mechanical power of AGN feedback derived from the radio luminosity is related to old stellar populations dominating the stellar mass, which in turn are related to the masses of central supermassive black holes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1583-1592
Number of pages10
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jan 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Galaxies: evolution
  • Galaxies: fundamental parameters
  • Galaxies: jets
  • Galaxies: stellar content
  • Radio continuum: general


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