mass-metallicity relation (MZR)
Fr.: relation masse-métallicité
A correlation between the → stellar mass (or → luminosity) and the → gas metallicity of → star-forming galaxies (Lequeux et al. 1979) according to which massive galaxies have higher gas metallicities. Several large galaxy surveys, such as the → Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS), have confirmed that galaxies at all → redshifts with higher stellar masses retain more metals than galaxies with lower stellar masses. Besides the dependence on stellar mass, other studies have found further dependences of gas metallicity on other physical properties at a given mass, such as → specific star formation rate, → star formation rate, and stellar age. These higher dimensional relations could provide additional constraints to the processes that regulate the metal enrichment in galaxies. In addition to gas metallicity, also the → stellar metallicity of galaxies is found to correlate with the stellar mass, suggesting the mass-metallicity relation already existed at early epochs of galaxy evolution (Lian et al., 2017, MNRAS 474, 1143, and references therein).