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Studying Magnetic Field Amplification in Interacting Galaxies Using Numerical Simulations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  20 January 2023

Simon Selg
Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg, Gojenbergsweg 112, D-21029 Hamburg, Germany email:
Wolfram Schmidt
Hamburger Sternwarte, Universität Hamburg, Gojenbergsweg 112, D-21029 Hamburg, Germany email:
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There are indications that the magnetic field evolution in galaxies might be massively shaped by tidal interactions and mergers between galaxies. The details of the connection between the evolution of magnetic fields and that of their host galaxies is still a field of research.

We use a combined approach of magnetohydrodynamics for the baryons and an N-body scheme for the dark matter to investigate magnetic field amplification and evolution in interacting galaxies.

We find that, for two colliding equal-mass galaxies and for varying initial relative spatial orientations, magnetic fields are amplified during interactions, yet cannot be sustained. Furthermore, we find clues for an active mean-field dynamo.

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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (, which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
© The Author(s), 2023. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of International Astronomical Union


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