The4He Abundance in the Metal‐deficient Blue Compact Dwarf Galaxies Tol 1214−277 and Tol 65

Yuri I. Izotov, Frederic H. Chaffee, Richard F. Green
2001 Astrophysical Journal  
We present high-quality Keck telescope spectroscopic observations of the two metal-deficient blue compact dwarf (BCD) galaxies Tol 1214-277 and Tol 65. These data are used to derive the heavy-element and helium abundances. We find that the oxygen abundances in Tol 1214-277 and Tol 65 are the same, 12+logO/H=7.54+/-0.01, or Zsun/24, despite the different ionization conditions in these galaxies. The nitrogen-to-oxygen abundance ratio in both galaxies is logN/O=-1.64+/-0.02 and lies in the narrow
more » ... lies in the narrow range found for the other most metal-deficient BCDs. We use the five strongest HeI emission lines 3889, 4471, 5876, 6678 and 7065, to correct self-consistently their intensities for collisional and fluorescent enhancement mechanisms and to derive the He abundance. Underlying stellar absorption is found to be important for the HeI 4471 emission line in both galaxies, being larger in Tol 65. The weighted He mass fractions in Tol 1214-277 and Tol 65 are respectively Y=0.2458+/-0.0039 and 0.2410+/-0.0050 when the three HeI emission lines, 4471, 5876 and 6678, are used, and are, respectively, 0.2466+/-0.0043 and 0.2463+/-0.0057 when the HeI 4471 emission line is excluded. These values are in very good agreement with recent measurements of the He mass fraction in others of the most metal-deficient BCDs by Izotov and coworkers. We find that the combined effect of the systematic uncertainties due to the underlying HeI stellar absorption lines, ionization and temperature structure of the HII region and collisional excitation of the hydrogen emission lines is likely small, not exceeding ~2% (the error is 2sigma). Our results support the validity of the standard big bang model of nucleosynthesis.
doi:10.1086/323864 fatcat:da34um775za4zh75nooozs7hgy