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A Drag Dominated Model of the Magellanic Stream

  • Gerhardt R. Meurer (a1), G. V. Bicknell (a1) and R. A. Gingold (a1)

Abstract

We present here the best of a series of models of the Magellanic stream. The dominant force in these models is gas drag. Gaseous cloudlets are torn from the bridge between the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds as the Magellanic system passes through a hot gaseous halo about our galaxy. The cloudlets are then stretched apart from each other by tidal and drag forces to form the Magellanic stream. Our best model closely reproduces the position of the stream on the sky and the run of radial velocities along the Magellanic stream. The agreement is almost as good as the best purely tidal model. In our best model the Magellanic system is only loosely bound to our galaxy and is on the first encounter with it. This overcomes some of the problems with purely tidal models. Our series of models indicate that there is a wide range of parameters that will produce a reasonable stream under the forces of gas drag and gravity.

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A Drag Dominated Model of the Magellanic Stream

  • Gerhardt R. Meurer (a1), G. V. Bicknell (a1) and R. A. Gingold (a1)

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