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Galactic spiral generation in tidal encounters

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 September 2016

Alex R. Pettitt
Affiliation:
Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 060-0810, Japan email: alex@astro1.sci.hokudai.ac.jp, tasker@astro1.sci.hokudai.ac.jp
Elizabeth J. Tasker
Affiliation:
Department of Physics, Faculty of Science, Hokkaido University, Sapporo 060-0810, Japan email: alex@astro1.sci.hokudai.ac.jp, tasker@astro1.sci.hokudai.ac.jp
James W. Wadsley
Affiliation:
Department of Physics and Astronomy, McMaster University, Hamilton, Canada email: wadsley@mcmaster.ca
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Abstract

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The existence of grand design spiral galaxies in the universe is still a standing problem. The passage of a small companion is known to be able to induce spiral structures in disc galaxies, but there remains questions over how relevant this mechanism is to the galaxies observed in the real universe. Our study aims to address two key points regarding such interactions; the limiting mass companion needed to drive tidal spiral structures, and the differences between the resulting gas and stellar morphology. We find the minimum mass of a companion to be as low as 5% of the stellar mass of the galaxy, and that the arms formed in the gas and the stars display very minor dynamical and morphological differences.

Type
Poster Papers
Copyright
Copyright © International Astronomical Union 2016 

References

Dobbs, C. L., Theis, C., Pringle, J. E., Bate, M. R., 2010, MNRAS, 403, 625 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kennicutt, R. C., 1981, AJ, 86, 1847 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Toomre, A., Toomre, J., 1972, APJ, 178, 623 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Wadsley, J. W., Stadel, J., Quinn, T., 2004, New Astron., 9, 137 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
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