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Galactic scale star formation: Interplay between stellar spirals and the ISM

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 April 2011

Keiichi Wada
Affiliation:
Graduate School of Science and Engeering, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima, Japan email: wada@cfca.jp
Junichi Baba
Affiliation:
National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
Michiko Fujii
Affiliation:
Graduate School of Science and Engeering, Kagoshima University, Kagoshima, Japan email: wada@cfca.jp
Takayuki R. Saitoh
Affiliation:
National Astronomical Observatory of Japan
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Abstract

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Spiral structures in the disk galaxies have been extensively studied by many theoretical papers, but conventional steady-state models are not consistent with what we observe in time-dependent, multi-dimensional numerical simulations and also in real galaxies. Here we review recent progress in numerical modeling of stellar and gas spirals in disk galaxies. The spiral arms excited in a stellar disk can last for 10 Gyrs without the ISM, but each spiral arm is short-lived and is recurrently formed. The stellar spirals are not waves propagating with a single pattern speed. The ISM is concentrated in local potential minima, which roughly follow the galactic rotation together with the stellar arms, therefore galactic dust lanes are not the classic ‘galactic shocks’.

Type
Contributed Papers
Copyright
Copyright © International Astronomical Union 2011

References

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