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Paper: Galaxy Zoo: Observing Secular Evolution Through Bars
Volume: 480, Structure and Dynamics of Disk Galaxies
Page: 165
Authors: Cheung, E.; Athanassoula, E.; Masters, K. L.; Nichol, R. C.; Bosma, A.; Bell, E. F.; Faber, S. M.; Koo, D. C.; Lintott, C.; Melvin, T.; Schawinski, K.; Skibba, R. A.; Willett, K. W.
Abstract: Although often seen in galaxies, the role that bars play in galaxy evolution has been largely overlooked. Observations show that bars — stellar linear-shaped structures — have been present in galaxies since z ∼ 1, about 8 billion years ago, and that more and more galaxies are becoming barred with time. This trend has continued to the present, where about two-thirds of all disk galaxies are barred. Observations have also shown that there is a connection between the presence of a bar and the properties of a galaxy, including morphology, star formation, chemical abundance gradients, and nuclear activity. These trends are consistent with the predicted effects of bars on galaxy evolution, i.e., secular evolution. Thus, observations and simulations indicate that bars are important drivers of galaxy evolution. But despite these evidence, bars are still commonly omitted in the lore of galaxy evolution. This proceeding briefly highlights work by Cheung et al. (2013), which tries to change this common omission by presenting the best evidence of bar-driven secular evolution yet. This work implies that bars are not stagnant structures within galaxies, but are instead, critical drivers of galaxy evolution.
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