450 research outputs found

    The Formation of the Milky Way in the Cosmological Context

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    The formation of the Milky Way is discussed within the context of the cold dark matter scenario. Several problems arise which can be solved if the Galaxy experienced an early phase of gas heating and decoupling from the dark matter substructure. This model combines the Eggen, Lynden-Bell and Sandage picture of a monolithic protogalactic collapses with the Searle and Zinn picture of an early merging phase of substructures into one consistent scenario of Galactic formation.Comment: 5 pages, conference proceeding. to appear in "Cosmic Evolution", eds. M. Lemoine and E. Vangioni-Fla

    The geometry and origin of ultra-diffuse ghost galaxies

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    The geometry and intrinsic ellipticity distribution of ultra diffuse galaxies (UDGs) is determined from the line-of-sight distribution of axial ratios q of a large sample of UDGs, detected by Koda et al. (2015) in the Coma cluster. With high significance the data rules out an oblate, disk-like geometry, characterised by major axi a=b>c. The data is however in good agreement with prolate shapes, corresponding to a=b<c. This indicates that UDGs are not thickened, rotating, axisymmetric disks, puffed up by violent processes. Instead they are anisotropic elongated cigar- or bar-like structures, similar to the prolate dwarf spheroidal galaxy population of the Local Group. The intrinsic distribution of axial ratios of the Coma UDGs is flat in the range of 0.4 <= a/c <= 0.9 which will provide important constraints for theoretical models of their origin. Formation scenarios that could explain the extended prolate nature of UDGs are discussed.Comment: 13 pages, 4 figures, ApJ, in pres

    The Challenge of Modelling Galactic Disks

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    Detailed models of galactic disk formation and evolution require knowledge about the initial conditions under which disk galaxies form, the boundary conditions that affect their secular evolution and the micro-physical processes that drive the multi-phase interstellar medium and regulate the star formation history. Unfortunately, up to now, most of these ingredients are still poorly understood. The challenge therefore is to, despite this caveat, construct realistic models of galactic disks with predictive power. This short review will summarize some problems related to numerical simulations of galactic disk formation and evolution.Comment: 7 pages, 2 figures, invited contribution: IAU Symposium 254 on "The Galaxy Disk in Cosmological Context

    On the Structure of the Orion A Cloud and the Formation of the Orion Nebula Cluster

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    We suggest that the Orion A cloud is gravitationally collapsing on large scales, and is producing the Orion Nebula Cluster due to the focusing effects of gravity acting within a finite cloud geometry. In support of this suggestion, we show how an elliptical rotating sheet of gas with a modest density gradient along the major axis can collapse to produce a structure qualitatively resembling Orion A, with a fan-shaped structure at one end, ridges or filaments along the fan, and a narrow curved filament at the other end reminiscent of the famous integral-shaped filament. The model produces a local concentration of mass within the narrow filament which in principle could form a dense cluster of stars like that of the Orion Nebula. We suggest that global gravitational contraction might be a more common feature of molecular clouds than previously recognized, and that the formation of star clusters is a dynamic process resulting from the focusing effects of gravity acting upon the geometry of finite clouds.Comment: 23 pages, 6 figures, to appear in the Astrophysical Journa
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