We measure the spatial clustering of galaxies as a function of their morphological type at z≃ 0.8, for the first time in a deep redshift survey with full morphological information. This is obtained by combining high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope imaging and Very Large Telescope spectroscopy for about 8500 galaxies to with accurate spectroscopic redshifts from the zCOSMOS-Bright redshift survey. At this epoch, early-type galaxies already show a significantly stronger clustering than late-type galaxies on all probed scales. A comparison to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data at z≃ 0.1 shows that the relative clustering strength between early and late morphological classes tends to increase with cosmic time at small separations, while on large scales it shows no significant evolution since z≃ 0.8. This suggests that most early-type galaxies had already formed in intermediate and dense environments at this epoch. Our results are consistent with a picture in which the relative clustering of different morphological types between z≃ 1 and 0 reflects the evolving role of environment in the morphological transformation of galaxies, on top of a global evolution driven by mass.
- Cosmology: observations
- Galaxies: evolution
- Galaxies: high-redshift
- Galaxies: statistics
- Large-scale structure of Universe