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The SAURON project - VII. Integral-field absorption and emission-line kinematics of 24 spiral galaxy bulges
We present observations of the stellar and gas kinematics for arepresentative sample of 24 Sa galaxies obtained with our custom-builtintegral-field spectrograph SAURON operating on the William HerschelTelescope. The data have been homogeneously reduced and analysed bymeans of a dedicated pipeline. All resulting data cubes were spatiallybinned to a minimum mean signal-to-noise ratio of 60 per spatial andspectral resolution element. Our maps typically cover thebulge-dominated region. We find a significant fraction of kinematicallydecoupled components (12/24), many of them displaying central velocitydispersion minima. They are mostly aligned and co-rotating with the mainbody of the galaxies, and are usually associated with dust discs andrings detected in unsharp-masked images. Almost all the galaxies in thesample (22/24) contain significant amounts of ionized gas which, ingeneral, is accompanied by the presence of dust. The kinematics of theionized gas are consistent with circular rotation in a disc co-rotatingwith respect to the stars. The distribution of mean misalignmentsbetween the stellar and gaseous angular momenta in the sample suggeststhat the gas has an internal origin. The [OIII]/Hβ ratio is usuallyvery low, indicative of current star formation, and shows variousmorphologies (ring-like structures, alignments with dust lanes oramorphous shapes). The star formation rates (SFRs) in the sample arecomparable with that of normal disc galaxies. Low gas velocitydispersion values appear to be linked to regions of intense starformation activity. We interpret this result as stars being formed fromdynamically cold gas in those regions. In the case of NGC5953, the datasuggest that we are witnessing the formation of a kinematicallydecoupled component from cold gas being acquired during the ongoinginteraction with NGC5954.

Minor Merger Origin for the Circumnuclear Starburst in NGC 7742
We present an emission-line diagnostic analysis of integral-fieldspectroscopic observations that cover the central kiloparsec of NGC7742. This Sa galaxy hosts a spectacular nuclear starburst ring andnuclear regions characterized by low-ionization emission. The gas in thering rotates in the opposite sense to the stars in the galaxy,suggesting a recent merging or acquisition event. The combination ofintegral-field measurements for the Hα+[N II] emission lines fromDensePak and the Hβ and [O III] emission from SAURON allow theconstruction of diagnostic diagrams that highlight the transition fromstar formation in the nuclear ring to excitation by high-velocity shocksor by an active galactic nucleus toward the center. DensePakmeasurements for the [S II] line ratio reveal very low gas densities inthe nuclear ring, Ne<100 cm-3, characteristicof massive H II regions. Comparison with MAPPINGS III models forstarbursts with low gas densities show that the ring is of roughly solarmetallicity. This suggests that the gas in the nuclear ring originatedin a stellar system capable of substantially enriching the gasmetallicity through sustained star formation. We propose that NGC 7742cannibalized a smaller galaxy rich in metal-poor gas, and that starformation episodes in the ring have since increased the metallicity toits present value. The techniques explored here can be widely used tostudy similar systems, including composite (AGN+starburst) galaxies.

Nature of Nuclear Rings in Unbarred Galaxies: NGC 7742 and NGC 7217
We have studied an unbarred Sb galaxy with a nuclear star-forming ring,NGC 7742, by means of two-dimensional spectroscopy, long-slitspectroscopy, and imaging and have compared the results with theproperties of another galaxy of this type, NGC 7217, which was studiedby us earlier. Both galaxies have many peculiar features in common: eachhas two global exponential stellar disks with different scale lengths,each possesses a circumnuclear inclined gaseous disk with a radius of300 pc, and each has a global counterrotating subsystem, a gaseous onein NGC 7742 and a stellar one in NGC 7217. We suggest that a past minormerger is the probable cause of all these peculiarities, including theappearance of nuclear star-forming rings without global bars; the ringsmight be produced as resonance features by tidally induced ovaldistortions of the global stellar disks.

Massive star formation in the central regions of spiral galaxies
Context: . The morphology of massive star formation in the centralregions of galaxies is an important tracer of the dynamical processesthat govern the evolution of disk, bulge, and nuclear activity. Aims. Wepresent optical imaging of the central regions of a sample of 73 spiralgalaxies in the Hα line and in optical broad bands, and deriveinformation on the morphology of massive star formation. Methods. Weobtained images with the William Herschel Telescope, mostly at a spatialresolution of below one second of arc. For most galaxies, no Hαimaging is available in the literature. We outline the observing anddata reduction procedures, list basic properties, and present the I-bandand continuum-subtracted Hα images. We classify the morphology ofthe nuclear and circumnuclear Hα emission and explore trends withhost galaxy parameters. Results. We confirm that late-type galaxies havea patchy circumnuclear appearance in Hα, and that nuclear ringsoccur primarily in spiral types Sa-Sbc. We identify a number ofpreviously unknown nuclear rings, and confirm that nuclear rings arepredominantly hosted by barred galaxies. Conclusions. Other than instimulating nuclear rings, bars do not influence the relative strengthof the nuclear Hα peak, nor the circumnuclear Hα morphology.Even considering that our selection criteria led to an over-abundance ofgalaxies with close massive companions, we do not find any significantinfluence of the presence or absence of a close companion on therelative strength of the nuclear Hα peak, nor on the Hαmorphology around the nucleus.

The stellar populations of low-luminosity active galactic nuclei - III. Spatially resolved spectral properties
In a recently completed survey of the stellar population properties oflow-ionization nuclear emission-line regions (LINERs) and LINER/HIItransition objects (TOs), we have identified a numerous class ofgalactic nuclei which stand out because of their conspicuous108-9 yr populations, traced by high-order Balmer absorptionlines and other stellar indices. These objects are called `young-TOs',because they all have TO-like emission-line ratios. In this paper weextend this previous work, which concentrated on the nuclear properties,by investigating the radial variations of spectral properties inlow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our analysis is based onhigh signal-to-noise ratio (S/N) long-slit spectra in the 3500-5500Å interval for a sample of 47 galaxies. The data probe distancesof typically up to 850 pc from the nucleus with a resolution of ~100 pc(~1 arcsec) and S/N ~ 30. Stellar population gradients are mapped by theradial profiles of absorption-line equivalent widths and continuumcolours along the slit. These variations are further analysed by meansof a decomposition of each spectrum in terms of template galaxiesrepresentative of very young (<=107 yr), intermediate age(108-9 yr) and old (1010 yr) stellar populations.This study reveals that young-TOs also differ from old-TOs andold-LINERs in terms of the spatial distributions of their stellarpopulations and dust. Specifically, our main findings are as follows.(i) Significant stellar population gradients are found almostexclusively in young-TOs. (ii) The intermediate age population ofyoung-TOs, although heavily concentrated in the nucleus, reachesdistances of up to a few hundred pc from the nucleus. Nevertheless, thehalf width at half-maximum of its brightness profile is more typically100 pc or less. (iii) Objects with predominantly old stellar populationspresent spatially homogeneous spectra, be they LINERs or TOs. (iv)Young-TOs have much more dust in their central regions than otherLLAGNs. (v) The B-band luminosities of the central <~1 Gyr populationin young-TOs are within an order of magnitude of MB=-15,implying masses of the order of ~107-108Msolar. This population was 10-100 times more luminous in itsformation epoch, at which time young massive stars would have completelyoutshone any active nucleus, unless the AGN too was brighter in thepast.

Ultraluminous X-Ray Sources in Nearby Galaxies from ROSAT High Resolution Imager Observations I. Data Analysis
X-ray observations have revealed in other galaxies a class ofextranuclear X-ray point sources with X-ray luminosities of1039-1041 ergs s-1, exceeding theEddington luminosity for stellar mass X-ray binaries. Theseultraluminous X-ray sources (ULXs) may be powered by intermediate-massblack holes of a few thousand Msolar or stellar mass blackholes with special radiation processes. In this paper, we present asurvey of ULXs in 313 nearby galaxies withD25>1' within 40 Mpc with 467 ROSAT HighResolution Imager (HRI) archival observations. The HRI observations arereduced with uniform procedures, refined by simulations that help definethe point source detection algorithm employed in this survey. A sampleof 562 extragalactic X-ray point sources withLX=1038-1043 ergs s-1 isextracted from 173 survey galaxies, including 106 ULX candidates withinthe D25 isophotes of 63 galaxies and 110 ULX candidatesbetween 1D25 and 2D25 of 64 galaxies, from which aclean sample of 109 ULXs is constructed to minimize the contaminationfrom foreground or background objects. The strong connection betweenULXs and star formation is confirmed based on the striking preference ofULXs to occur in late-type galaxies, especially in star-forming regionssuch as spiral arms. ULXs are variable on timescales over days to yearsand exhibit a variety of long term variability patterns. Theidentifications of ULXs in the clean sample show some ULXs identified assupernovae (remnants), H II regions/nebulae, or young massive stars instar-forming regions, and a few other ULXs identified as old globularclusters. In a subsequent paper, the statistic properties of the surveywill be studied to calculate the occurrence frequencies and luminosityfunctions for ULXs in different types of galaxies to shed light on thenature of these enigmatic sources.

Circumnuclear Structure and Black Hole Fueling: Hubble Space Telescope NICMOS Imaging of 250 Active and Normal Galaxies
Why are the nuclei of some galaxies more active than others? If mostgalaxies harbor a central massive black hole, the main difference isprobably in how well it is fueled by its surroundings. We investigatethe hypothesis that such a difference can be seen in the detailedcircumnuclear morphologies of galaxies using several quantitativelydefined features, including bars, isophotal twists, boxy and diskyisophotes, and strong nonaxisymmetric features in unsharp-masked images.These diagnostics are applied to 250 high-resolution images of galaxycenters obtained in the near-infrared with NICMOS on the Hubble SpaceTelescope. To guard against the influence of possible biases andselection effects, we have carefully matched samples of Seyfert 1,Seyfert 2, LINER, starburst, and normal galaxies in their basicproperties, taking particular care to ensure that each was observed witha similar average scale (10-15 pc pixel-1). Severalmorphological differences among our five different spectroscopicclassifications emerge from the analysis. The H II/starburst galaxiesshow the strongest deviations from smooth elliptical isophotes, whilethe normal galaxies and LINERs have the least disturbed morphology. TheSeyfert 2s have significantly more twisted isophotes than any othercategory, and the early-type Seyfert 2s are significantly more disturbedthan the early-type Seyfert 1s. The morphological differences betweenSeyfert 1s and Seyfert 2s suggest that more is at work than simply theviewing angle of the central engine. They may correspond to differentevolutionary stages.

The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. II. Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph Observations
We present a study of the stellar populations of low-luminosity activegalactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our goal is to search for spectroscopicsignatures of young and intermediate-age stars and to investigate theirrelationship with the ionization mechanism in LLAGNs. The method used isbased on the stellar population synthesis of the optical continuum ofthe innermost (20-100 pc) regions in these galaxies. For this purpose,we have collected high spatial resolution optical (2900-5700 Å)STIS spectra of 28 nearby LLAGNs that are available in the Hubble SpaceTelescope archive. The analysis of these data is compared with a similaranalysis also presented here for 51 ground-based spectra of LLAGNs. Ourmain findings are as follows: (1) No features due to Wolf-Rayet starswere convincingly detected in the STIS spectra. (2) Young starscontribute very little to the optical continuum in the ground-basedaperture. However, the fraction of light provided by these stars ishigher than 10% in most of the weak-[O I] ([OI]/Hα<=0.25) LLAGNSTIS spectra. (3) Intermediate-age stars contribute significantly to theoptical continuum of these nuclei. This population is more frequent inobjects with weak than with strong [O I]. Weak-[O I] LLAGNs that haveyoung stars stand out for their intermediate-age population. (4) Most ofthe strong-[O I] LLAGNs have predominantly old stellar population. A fewof these objects also show a featureless continuum that contributessignificantly to the optical continuum. These results suggest that youngand intermediate-age stars do not play a significant role in theionization of LLAGNs with strong [O I]. However, the ionization inweak-[O I] LLAGNs with young and/or intermediate-age populations couldbe due to stellar processes. A comparison of the properties of theseobjects with Seyfert 2 galaxies that harbor a nuclear starburst suggeststhat weak-[O I] LLAGNs are the lower luminosity counterparts of theSeyfert 2 composite nuclei.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASAcontract NAS 5-26555. Based on observations made with the Nordic OpticalTelescope (NOT), operated on the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark,Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio delRoque de los Muchachos of the Instituto de Astrofísica deCanarias.

The Stellar Populations of Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. I. Ground-based Observations
We present a spectroscopic study of the stellar populations oflow-luminosity active galactic nuclei (LLAGNs). Our main goal is todetermine whether the stars that live in the innermost (100 pc scale)regions of these galaxies are in some way related to the emission-lineproperties, which would imply a link between the stellar population andthe ionization mechanism. High signal-to-noise ratio, ground-basedlong-slit spectra in the 3500-5500 Å interval were collected for60 galaxies: 51 LINERs and LINER/H II transition objects, two starburstgalaxies, and seven nonactive galaxies. In this paper, the first of aseries, we (1) describe the sample; (2) present the nuclear spectra; (3)characterize the stellar populations of LLAGNs by means of an empiricalcomparison with normal galaxies; (4) measure a set of spectral indices,including several absorption-line equivalent widths and colorsindicative of stellar populations; and (5) correlate the stellar indiceswith emission-line ratios that may distinguish between possibleexcitation sources for the gas. Our main findings are as follows: (1)Few LLAGNs have a detectable young (<~107 yr) starburstcomponent, indicating that very massive stars do not contributesignificantly to the optical continuum. In particular, no features dueto Wolf-Rayet stars were convincingly detected. (2) High-order Balmerabsorption lines of H I (HOBLs), on the other hand, are detected in ~40%of LLAGNs. These features, which are strongest in108-109 yr intermediate-age stellar populations,are accompanied by diluted metal absorption lines and bluer colors thanother objects in the sample. (3) These intermediate-age populations arevery common (~50%) in LLAGNs with relatively weak [O I] emission([OI]/Hα<=0.25) but rare (~10%) in LLAGNs with stronger [O I].This is intriguing since LLAGNs with weak [O I] have been previouslyhypothesized to be ``transition objects'' in which both an AGN and youngstars contribute to the emission-line excitation. Massive stars, ifpresent, are completely outshone by intermediate-age and old stars inthe optical. This happens in at least a couple of objects whereindependent UV spectroscopy detects young starbursts not seen in theoptical. (4) Objects with predominantly old stars span the whole rangeof [O I]/Hα values, but (5) sources with significant young and/orintermediate-age populations are nearly all (~90%) weak-[O I] emitters.These new findings suggest a link between the stellar populations andthe gas ionization mechanism. The strong-[O I] objects are most likelytrue LLAGNs, with stellar processes being insignificant. However, theweak-[O I] objects may comprise two populations, one where theionization is dominated by stellar processes and another where it isgoverned by either an AGN or a more even mixture of stellar and AGNprocesses. Possible stellar sources for the ionization include weakstarbursts, supernova remnants, and evolved poststarburst populations.These scenarios are examined and constrained by means of complementaryobservations and detailed modeling of the stellar populations inforthcoming communications.Based on observations made with the Nordic Optical Telescope, operatedon the island of La Palma jointly by Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway,and Sweden, in the Spanish Observatorio del Roque de los Muchachos ofthe Instituto de Astrofísica de Canárias.

On position angle errors in the Tremaine-Weinberg method
I show that Tremaine-Weinberg (TW) measurements of bar pattern speedsare sensitive to errors in the position angle of the disc,PAdisc. I use an N-body experiment to measure these errors;for typical random PAdisc errors, the resulting scatter inthe measured values of the dimensionless bar speed parameter (defined asthe ratio of the corotation radius to the bar semi-major axis) is of theorder of the scatter in the observed values.I also consider how the systematic PAdisc errors produced bydisc ellipticities affect TW measurements. The scatter produced by theseerrors may be significant, depending on the ellipticity distribution.Conversely, by using the sample of TW observations, I find that an upperlimit of the typical disc (density) ellipticity is 0.07 at the 90 percent confidence level, which is in good agreement with previousmeasurements.Taken together, the random and systematic scatter suggest that theintrinsic distribution of of gas-poor early-type barred galaxies may beas narrow as that of the gas-rich later types.

The Chemically Distinct Nucleus and Structure of the S0 Galaxy NGC 80
The giant lenticular galaxy NGC 80, which is the brightest member of arich group, possesses a central evolutionarily-distinct region: thestars in the nucleus and in a circumnuclear ring of radius 5″t7″ have a mean age of only 7 Gyr, whereas the stellar populationof the bulge is older than 10 Gyr. The nucleus of NGC 80 is alsochemically distinct: it is a factor of 2 2.5 richer in metals than itsimmediate neighborhood and is characterized by a high magnesium-to-ironabundance ratio [Mg/Fe]≈+0.3. The global stellar disk of NGC 80 has atwo-tiered structure: its outer part has an exponential scale length of11 kpc and normal surface density, while the inner disk, which is alsoexponential and axisymmetric, is more compact and brighter. Although thetwo-tiered structure and the chemically distinct nucleus obviously havea common origin and owe their existence to some catastrophicrestructuring of the protogalactic gaseous disk, the origin of thisremains unclear, since the galaxy lacks any manifestations of perturbedmorphology or triaxiality.

Infrared Observations of Galaxies in the Local Universe. II. 391 Calibrated Images with Photometric and Structural Measurements
This paper presents empirical results from a deep imaging survey ofgalaxies in the local universe at the J and Ks wavelengths.Three hundred ninety-one images have been obtained and calibrated usingthe same camera and filter set with the Steward Observatory 1.6 m KuiperTelescope on Mount Bigelow and the 2.3 m Bok Telescope on Kitt Peak. Thelimiting magnitude is typically 22 mag arcsec-1 at J and 21mag arcsec-1 at Ks. The central surfacebrightness, apparent magnitudes, sizes, scale lengths, and inclinationsare tabulated from measurements made using these data. The purpose ofthis paper is to provide basic near-infrared data on a variety of galaxytypes.

X-Ray Emission from a Sample of Young Supernovae
When a massive star produces a powerful stellar wind prior to itssupernova event, theory predicts that the collision of the explodedstellar ejecta with the wind leads to a reverse shock, creating softX-ray emission. To understand the frequency at which luminous youngX-ray supernovae occur, we used ROSAT to observe a complete sample ofnearby supernovae (vhelio<1700 km s-1) thatoccurred in the period 1985.5 through 1994.3, which included eight TypeIa supernovae and 19 Type Ib and Type II events. Three supernovae aredetected in this time frame, SN 1987A (LMC), SN 1993J (NGC 3031), and apreviously unreported source, SN 1992ad, a Type II supernova in NGC4411b. No supernova had 0.5-2 keV luminosities exceeding2×1039 ergs s-1, so at the 95% confidencelevel, the probability of an individual supernova exceeding thisluminosity limit is less than 12%. Two of these supernovae hadluminosities brighter than 6×1038 ergs s-1and at the 95% confidence level, the probability of a supernova beingdetected above this luminosity is in the range 8.7%-51%. It is unlikelyfor young supernovae to be a large component of the IntermediateLuminosity X-Ray Object (IXO or ULX) class, where the luminosity exceeds2×1039 ergs s-1. The rate of successfuldetections appears to increase for sensitivities in the 1037ergs s-1 range, especially when obtained close to the time ofthe event.

A Turbulent Origin for Flocculent Spiral Structure in Galaxies
The flocculent structure of star formation in galaxies has a Fouriertransform power spectrum for azimuthal intensity scans with a power-lawslope that increases systematically from about -1 at large scales toabout -5/3 at small scales. This is the same pattern as in the powerspectra for azimuthal scans of H I emission in the Large MagellanicClouds and for flocculent dust clouds in galactic nuclei. The steep partalso corresponds to the slope of about -3 for two-dimensional powerspectra that have been observed in atomic and molecular gas surveys ofthe Milky Way and the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. The power-lawstructure for star formation in galaxies arises in both flocculent andgrand-design disks, which implies that star formation is the same ineach and most likely related to turbulence. The characteristic scalethat separates these two slopes corresponds to several tens of pixels orseveral hundred parsecs in most galaxies, which is comparable to thescale height, the inverse of the Jeans wavenumber, and the size of thelargest star complexes. We suggest that the power spectrum of opticallight is the result of turbulence and that the large-scale turbulentmotions are generated by sheared gravitational instabilities that makeflocculent spiral arms first and then cascade to form clouds andclusters on smaller scales. Stellar energy sources presumably contributeto this turbulence by driving smaller scale motions and by replacing thegravitational binding energy that is released during spiral armcollapse. The spiral wave mode in the image of M81 is removed byreconstructing the Fourier transforms without the lowest 10 wavenumbers.The result shows the underlying flocculent spirals and reverse-shearspirals of star formation that are normally overwhelmed by the densitywave.

The Ringed Spiral Galaxy NGC 4622. I. Photometry, Kinematics, and the Case for Two Strong Leading Outer Spiral Arms
The intriguing nearly face-on southern ringed spiral galaxy NGC 4622,the first galaxy definitively shown to have leading spiral structure, isrevisited in this paper with new images from the Hubble SpaceTelescope's (HST) WFPC2, together with ground-based optical and near-IRimaging, and a Fabry-Perot Hα velocity field. The data provide newinformation on the disk/bulge/halo mix, rotation curve, star formationin the galaxy, and the sense of winding of its prominent spiral arms.Previously, we suggested that the weaker, inner single arm most likelyhas the leading sense, based on a numerical simulation. Now, takingadvantage of HST resolution and using de Vaucouleurs' standardextinction and reddening technique to determine the near side of thegalaxy's slightly tilted disk, we come to the more surprising conclusionthat the two strong outer arms have the leading sense. We suggest thatthis highly unusual configuration may be the result of a past minormerger or mild tidal encounter. Possible evidence for a minor merger isfound in a short, central dust lane, although this is purelycircumstantial and an unrelated interaction with a different companioncould also be relevant. The leading arms may be allowed to persistbecause NGC 4622 is dark halo dominated (i.e., not ``maximum disk'' inthe inner regions) and displays a significantly rising rotation curve.The new HST observations also reveal a rich globular cluster system inthe galaxy. The mean color of these clusters is (V-I)0=1.04,and the specific frequency is 3.4+/-0.6. The luminosity function ofthese clusters confirms the membership of NGC 4622 in the CentaurusCluster.Based on observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtainedat the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by theAssociation of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., undercontract NAS 5-26555.

Do bulges of early- and late-type spirals have different morphology?
We study HST/NICMOS H-band images of bulges of two equal-sized samplesof early- (TRC3 <= 3) and late-type spiral (mainly Sbc-Sc)galaxies matched in outer disk axis ratio. We find that bulges oflate-type spirals are more elongated than their counterparts inearly-type spirals. Using a KS-test we find that the two distributionsare different at the 98.4% confidence level. We conclude that the twodata sets are different, i.e. late-type galaxies have a broaderellipticity distribution and contain more elongated features in theinner regions. We discuss the possibility that these would correspond tobars at a later evolutionary stage, i.e. secularly evolved bars.Consequent implications are raised, and we discuss relevant questionsregarding the formation and structure of bulges. Are bulges ofearly-type and late-type spirals different? Are their formationscenarios different? Can we talk about bulges in the same way fordifferent types of galaxies?

A new catalogue of ISM content of normal galaxies
We have compiled a catalogue of the gas content for a sample of 1916galaxies, considered to be a fair representation of ``normality''. Thedefinition of a ``normal'' galaxy adopted in this work implies that wehave purposely excluded from the catalogue galaxies having distortedmorphology (such as interaction bridges, tails or lopsidedness) and/orany signature of peculiar kinematics (such as polar rings,counterrotating disks or other decoupled components). In contrast, wehave included systems hosting active galactic nuclei (AGN) in thecatalogue. This catalogue revises previous compendia on the ISM contentof galaxies published by \citet{bregman} and \citet{casoli}, andcompiles data available in the literature from several small samples ofgalaxies. Masses for warm dust, atomic and molecular gas, as well asX-ray luminosities have been converted to a uniform distance scale takenfrom the Catalogue of Principal Galaxies (PGC). We have used twodifferent normalization factors to explore the variation of the gascontent along the Hubble sequence: the blue luminosity (LB)and the square of linear diameter (D225). Ourcatalogue significantly improves the statistics of previous referencecatalogues and can be used in future studies to define a template ISMcontent for ``normal'' galaxies along the Hubble sequence. The cataloguecan be accessed on-line and is also available at the Centre desDonnées Stellaires (CDS).The catalogue is available in electronic form athttp://dipastro.pd.astro.it/galletta/ismcat and at the CDS via anonymousftp to\ cdsarc.u-strasbg.fr ( or via\http://cdsweb.u-strasbg.fr/cgi-bin/qcat?J/A+A/405/5

The SAURON project - II. Sample and early results
Early results are reported from the SAURON survey of the kinematics andstellar populations of a representative sample of nearby E, S0 and Sagalaxies. The survey is aimed at determining the intrinsic shape of thegalaxies, their orbital structure, the mass-to-light ratio as a functionof radius, the age and metallicity of the stellar populations, and thefrequency of kinematically decoupled cores and nuclear black holes. Theconstruction of the representative sample is described, and itsproperties are illustrated. A comparison with long-slit spectroscopicdata establishes that the SAURON measurements are comparable to, orbetter than, the highest-quality determinations. Comparisons arepresented for NGC 3384 and 4365, where stellar velocities and velocitydispersions are determined to a precision of 6kms-1, and theh3 and h4 parameters of the line-of-sight velocitydistribution to a precision of better than 0.02. Extraction of accurategas emission-line intensities, velocities and linewidths from the datacubes is illustrated for NGC 5813. Comparisons with published linestrengths for NGC 3384 and 5813 reveal uncertainties of <~0.1Åon the measurements of the Hβ, Mg b and Fe5270 indices.Integral-field mapping uniquely connects measurements of the kinematicsand stellar populations to the galaxy morphology. The maps presentedhere illustrate the rich stellar kinematics, gaseous kinematics, andline-strength distributions of early-type galaxies. The results includethe discovery of a thin, edge-on, disc in NGC 3623, confirm theaxisymmetric shape of the central region of M32, illustrate the LINERnucleus and surrounding counter-rotating star-forming ring in NGC 7742,and suggest a uniform stellar population in the decoupled core galaxyNGC 5813.

The Radio Properties of Composite LINER/H II Galaxies
Arcsecond-resolution VLA observations-newly obtained as well aspublished-of 40 nearby galaxies are discussed, completing a study of theradio properties of a magnitude-limited sample of nearby galaxies of thecomposite LINER/H II type. Our results reveal an overall detection rateof at least 25% active galactic nucleus (AGN) candidates among thesecomposite sources. The general properties of these AGN candidates, ascompared to non-AGN composite sources and H II galaxies, are discussed.

Nested and Single Bars in Seyfert and Non-Seyfert Galaxies
We analyze the observed properties of nested and single stellar barsystems in disk galaxies. The 112 galaxies in our sample comprise thelargest matched Seyfert versus non-Seyfert galaxy sample of nearbygalaxies with complete near-infrared or optical imaging sensitive tolength scales ranging from tens of parsecs to tens of kiloparsecs. Thepresence of bars is deduced by fitting ellipses to isophotes in HubbleSpace Telescope (HST) H-band images up to 10" radius and in ground-basednear-infrared and optical images outside the H-band images. This is aconservative approach that is likely to result in an underestimate ofthe true bar fraction. We find that a significant fraction of the samplegalaxies, 17%+/-4%, have more than one bar, and that 28%+/-5% of barredgalaxies have nested bars. The bar fractions appear to be stableaccording to reasonable changes in our adopted bar criteria. For thenested bars, we detect a clear division in length between thelarge-scale (primary) bars and small-scale (secondary) bars, in bothabsolute and normalized (to the size of the galaxy) length. We arguethat this bimodal distribution can be understood within the framework ofdisk resonances, specifically the inner Lindblad resonances (ILRs),which are located where the gravitational potential of the innermostgalaxy switches effectively from three-dimensional to two-dimensional.This conclusion is further strengthened by the observed distribution ofthe sizes of nuclear rings which are dynamically associated with theILRs. While primary bar sizes are found to correlate with the hostgalaxy sizes, no such correlation is observed for the secondary bars.Moreover, we find that secondary bars differ morphologically from singlebars. Our matched Seyfert and non-Seyfert samples show a statisticallysignificant excess of bars among the Seyfert galaxies at practically alllength scales. We confirm our previous results that bars are moreabundant in Seyfert hosts than in non-Seyfert galaxies and that Seyfertgalaxies always show a preponderance of ``thick'' bars compared to thebars in non-Seyfert galaxies. Finally, no correlation is observedbetween the presence of a bar and that of companion galaxies, evenrelatively bright ones. Overall, since star formation and dustextinction can be significant even in the H band, the stellar dynamicsof the central kiloparsec cannot always be revealed reliably by the useof near-infrared surface photometry alone.

Bar Galaxies and Their Environments
The prints of the Palomar Sky Survey, luminosity classifications, andradial velocities were used to assign all northern Shapley-Ames galaxiesto either (1) field, (2) group, or (3) cluster environments. Thisinformation for 930 galaxies shows no evidence for a dependence of barfrequency on galaxy environment. This suggests that the formation of abar in a disk galaxy is mainly determined by the properties of theparent galaxy, rather than by the characteristics of its environment.

Spiral Galaxies with HST/NICMOS. I. Nuclear Morphologies, Color Maps, and Distinct Nuclei
This is the first of two papers where we present the analysis of anHST/NICMOS2 near-infrared (NIR) snapshot survey in the F160W (H) filterfor a sample of 78 spiral galaxies selected from the UGC and ESOLVcatalogs. For 69 of these objects we provide nuclear color informationderived by combining the H data either with additional NICMOS F110W (J)images or with V WFPC2/HST data. Here we present the NIR images and theoptical-NIR color maps. We focus our attention on the properties of thephotometrically distinct ``nuclei'' which are found embedded in most ofthe galaxies and provide measurements of their half-light radii andmagnitudes in the H (and when available in the J) band. We find that (1)in the NIR the nuclei embedded in the bright early- to intermediate-typegalaxies span a much larger range in brightness than the nuclei whichare typically found embedded in bulgeless late-type disks: the nucleiembedded in the early- to intermediate-type galaxies reach, on thebright end, values up to HAB~-17.7 mag; (2) nuclei are foundin both nonbarred and barred hosts, in large-scale (>~1 kpc) as wellas in nuclear (up to a few 100 pc) bars; (3) there is a significantincrease in half-light radius with increasing luminosity of the nucleusin the early/intermediate types (a decade in radius for ~8 magbrightening), a correlation which was found in the V band and which isalso seen in the NIR data; (4) the nuclei of early/intermediate-typespirals cover a large range of optical-NIR colors, from V-H~-0.5 to 3.Some nuclei are bluer and others redder than the surroundinggalaxy,indicating the presence of activity or reddening by dust in many ofthese systems; (5) someearly/intermediate nuclei are elongated and/orslightly offset from the isophotal center of the host galaxy. Onaverage, however, these nuclei appear as centered, star-cluster-likestructures similar to those whichare found in the late-type disks. Basedon observations with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope, obtained atthe Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by Associationof Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., under NASA contract NAS5-26555.

The SAURON Survey of Early-Type Galaxies in the Nearby Universe
The aim of the SAURON collaboration, and the reason for building theinstrument, is to study a representative sample of nearby ellipticals,lenticulars and bulges of early-type spirals, in order to measure theirintrinsic shapes, velocity and metallicity distributions, and to gaininsight into the relation between their stellar and gaseous.

The Progenitors of Subluminous Type Ia Supernovae
We find that spectroscopically peculiar subluminous Type Ia supernovae(SNe Ia) come from an old population. Of the 16 subluminous SNe Iaknown, 10 are found in E/S0 galaxies, and the remainder are found inearly-type spiral galaxies. The probability that this is a chanceoccurrence is only 0.2%. The finding that subluminous SNe Ia areassociated with an older stellar population indicates that for asufficiently large look-back time (already accessible in currenthigh-redshift searches) they will not be found. Due to a scarcity in oldpopulations, hydrogen and helium main-sequence stars and He red giantstars that undergo Roche lobe overflow are unlikely to be theprogenitors of subluminous SNe Ia. Earlier findings that overluminousSNe Ia [Δm15(B)<~0.95] come from a young progenitorpopulation are confirmed. The fact that subluminous SNe Ia andoverluminous SNe Ia come from different progenitor populations and alsohave different properties is a prediction of the CO white dwarf mergerprogenitor scenario.

Homogenization of the Stellar Population along Late-Type Spiral Galaxies
We present a study of the broadband UBV color profiles for 257 Sbcbarred and nonbarred galaxies, using photoelectric aperture photometrydata from the literature. Using robust statistical methods, we haveestimated the color gradients of the galaxies, as well as the total andbulge mean colors. A comparative photometric study using CCD images wasdone. In our sample, the color gradients are negative (reddish inward)in approximately 59% of the objects, are almost null in 27%, and arepositive in 14%, considering only the face-on galaxies, which representapproximately 51% of the sample. The results do not change, essentially,when we include the edge-on galaxies. As a consequence of this study wehave also found that barred galaxies are overrepresented among theobjects having null or positive gradients, indicating that bars act as amechanism of homogenization of the stellar population. This effect ismore evident in the U-B color index, although it can also be detected inthe B-V color. A correlation between the total and bulge colors wasfound that is a consequence of an underlying correlation between thecolors of bulges and disks found by other authors. Moreover, the meantotal color is the same irrespective of the gradient regime, whilebulges are bluer in galaxies with null or positive gradients, whichindicates an increase of the star formation rate in the central regionsof these objects. We have also made a quantitative evaluation of theamount of extinction in the center of these galaxies. This was doneusing the Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2) and the Near InfraredCamera and Multi-Object Spectrometer (NICMOS) Hubble Space Telescope(HST) archival data, as well as CCD B, V, and I images. We show thatalthough the extinction in the V-band can reach values up to 2 mag inthe central region, it is unlikely that dust plays a fundamental role inglobal color gradients. We found no correlation between color and O/Habundance gradients. This result could suggest that the color gradientsare more sensitive to the age rather than to the metallicity of thestellar population. However, the absence of this correlation may becaused by dust extinction. We discuss this result by considering apicture in which bars are a relatively fast, recurrent phenomenon. Theseresults are not compatible with a pure classical monolithic scenario forbulge and disk formation. On the contrary, they favor a scenario inwhich both these components are evolving in a correlated process inwhich stellar bars play a crucial role. Based partly on observationsmade at the Pico dos Dias Observatory (PDO/LNA-CNPq), Brazil.

Nearby Optical Galaxies: Selection of the Sample and Identification of Groups
In this paper we describe the Nearby Optical Galaxy (NOG) sample, whichis a complete, distance-limited (cz<=6000 km s-1) andmagnitude-limited (B<=14) sample of ~7000 optical galaxies. Thesample covers 2/3 (8.27 sr) of the sky (|b|>20deg) andappears to have a good completeness in redshift (97%). We select thesample on the basis of homogenized corrected total blue magnitudes inorder to minimize systematic effects in galaxy sampling. We identify thegroups in this sample by means of both the hierarchical and thepercolation ``friends-of-friends'' methods. The resulting catalogs ofloose groups appear to be similar and are among the largest catalogs ofgroups currently available. Most of the NOG galaxies (~60%) are found tobe members of galaxy pairs (~580 pairs for a total of ~15% of objects)or groups with at least three members (~500 groups for a total of ~45%of objects). About 40% of galaxies are left ungrouped (field galaxies).We illustrate the main features of the NOG galaxy distribution. Comparedto previous optical and IRAS galaxy samples, the NOG provides a densersampling of the galaxy distribution in the nearby universe. Given itslarge sky coverage, the identification of groups, and its high-densitysampling, the NOG is suited to the analysis of the galaxy density fieldof the nearby universe, especially on small scales.

Radio Sources in Low-Luminosity Active Galactic Nuclei. I. VLA Detections of Compact, Flat-Spectrum Cores
We report a high-resolution (0.2"), 15 GHz survey of a sample of 48low-luminosity active galactic nuclei with the Very LargeArray.5 Compact radio emission has beendetected above a flux density of 1.1 mJy in 57% (17 of 30) oflow-ionization nuclear emission-line region (LINER) nuclei andlow-luminosity Seyfert galaxies. The 2 cm radio power is significantlycorrelated with the emission-line ([O I] λ6300) luminosity. Usingradio fluxes at other frequencies from the literature, we find that atleast 15 of the 18 detected radio cores have a flat to inverted spectrum(α>=-0.3, Sν~να). While thepresent observations are consistent with the radio emission originatingin star-forming regions (the brightness temperatures are>=102.5-4.5 K), higher resolution radio observations of 10of the detected sources, reported in an accompanying paper, show thatthe cores are very compact (<~1 pc), of high brightness temperature(Tb>~108 K), and probably synchrotronself-absorbed, ruling out a starburst origin. Thus, our results suggestthat at least 50% of low-luminosity Seyfert galaxies and LINERs in thesample are accretion powered, with the radio emission presumably comingfrom jets or advection-dominated accretion flows. We have detected only1 of 18 ``transition'' (i.e., LINER+H II) nuclei observed, indicatingthat their radio cores are significantly weaker than those of ``pure''LINERs. Compact 2 cm radio cores are found in both type 1 (i.e., withbroad Hα) and type 2 (without broad Hα) nuclei. There isweak evidence, limited in significance by small numbers, thatlow-luminosity active galactic nuclei with compact radio cores exhibitradio ejecta preferentially aligned along the rotation axis of thegalaxy disk. If this result were confirmed by a larger sample, it wouldlend support to the idea that the misalignment of accretion disks withthe galaxy stellar disk in more luminous Seyfert galaxies is a result ofradiation-pressure-induced warping of their accretion disks.

Arcsecond Positions of UGC Galaxies
We present accurate B1950 and J2000 positions for all confirmed galaxiesin the Uppsala General Catalog (UGC). The positions were measuredvisually from Digitized Sky Survey images with rms uncertaintiesσ<=[(1.2")2+(θ/100)2]1/2,where θ is the major-axis diameter. We compared each galaxymeasured with the original UGC description to ensure high reliability.The full position list is available in the electronic version only.

The Mass-to-Light Ratio of Binary Galaxies
We report on the mass-to-light ratio determination based on a newlyselected binary galaxy sample, which includes a large number of pairswhose separations exceed a few hundred kpc. The probabilitydistributions of the projected separation and the velocity differencehave been calculated considering the contamination of optical pairs, andthe mass-to-light (M/L) ratio has been determined based on the maximumlikelihood method. The best estimate of the M/L in the B band for 57pairs is found to be 28-36 depending on the orbital parameters and thedistribution of optical pairs (solar unit: H_0=50 km s^-1 Mpc^-1). Thebest estimate of the M/L for 30 pure spiral pairs is found to be 12-16.These results are relatively smaller than those obtained in previousstudies but are consistent with each other within the errors. Althoughthe number of pairs with large separation is significantly increasedcompared with previous samples, the M/L does not show any tendency ofincrease but is found to be almost independent of the separation ofpairs beyond 100 kpc. The constancy of the M/L beyond 100 kpc mayindicate that the typical halo size of spiral galaxies is less than ~100kpc.

The Environments of Supernovae in Post-Refurbishment Hubble Space Telescope Images
The locations of supernovae (SNe) in the local stellar and gaseousenvironment in galaxies contain important clues to their progenitorstars. Access to this information, however, has been hampered by thelimited resolution achieved by ground-based observations. High spatialresolution Hubble Space Telescope (HST) images of galaxy fields in whichsupernovae had been observed can improve the situation considerably. Wehave examined the immediate environments of a few dozen supernovae usingarchival post-refurbishment HST images. Although our analysis is limitedbecause of signal-to-noise ratio and filter bandpass considerations, theimages allow us for the first time to resolve individual stars in, andto derive detailed color-magnitude diagrams for, several environments.We are able to place more rigorous constraints on the masses of thesesupernovae. A search was made for late-time emission from supernovae inthe archival images and for the progenitor stars in presupernova imagesof the host galaxies. We have detected SN 1986J in NGC 891 and,possibly, SN 1981K in NGC 4258. We have also identified the progenitorof the Type IIn SN 1997bs in NGC 3627. By removing younger resolvedstars in the environments of SNe Ia, we can measure the colors of theunresolved stellar background and attribute these colors generally to anolder, redder population. HST images ``accidentally'' caught the Type IaSN 1994D in NGC 4526 shortly after its outburst; we measure itsbrightness. Finally, we add to the statistical inferences that can bemade from studying the association of SNe with recent star-formingregions.

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Right ascension:23h44m15.80s
Aparent dimensions:1.698′ × 1.622′

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NGC 2000.0NGC 7742

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