On the globular cluster color distributions

Suk Jin Yoon, Chul Chung

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Citations (Scopus)


The bimodal color distribution of globular clusters (GCs) is an outstanding discovery from observations of early-type galaxies [1,2]. Yoon, Yi, & Lee have recently presented a new theoretical metallicity-color relationship that has a significant inflection and showed that such a relation can produce bimodal color distribution of an old GC system even when the intrinsic metallicity distribution is unimodal [3]. We have applied this hypothesis to (1) the considerable variation in color histogram morphologies from color to color, and (2) the broad unimodal color distributions of GCs found in some galaxies. Our population model suggests the different shapes of the [Fe/H]-color relations depending on the color used. As a result, the [Fe/H] distribution of a GC system can be transformed into color distributions that significantly vary from color to color, consistent with the currently available data (Fig. 1). On the other hand, the simulation shows that the presence of a metal-rich, young GC population in addition to the old population may be responsible for the broad unimodal color distributions (Fig. 2). The results may be taken as a further support for the Yoon, Yi, & Lee hypothesis.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGlobular Clusters - Guides to Galaxies
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of the Joint ESO-FONDAP Workshop on Globular Clusters
EditorsTom Richtler, Soren Larsen
Number of pages3
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Publication series

NameESO Astrophysics Symposia
ISSN (Print)1431-2433
ISSN (Electronic)1611-6143

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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