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THE DOMINANCE OF METAL-RICH STREAMS IN STELLAR HALOS: A COMPARISON BETWEEN SUBSTRUCTURE IN M31 AND Lambda CDM MODELS

Gilbert, KM, Font, AS, Johnston, KV and Guhathakurta, P (2009) THE DOMINANCE OF METAL-RICH STREAMS IN STELLAR HALOS: A COMPARISON BETWEEN SUBSTRUCTURE IN M31 AND Lambda CDM MODELS. Astrophysical Journal, 701 (1). pp. 776-786. ISSN 0004-637X

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Abstract

Extensive photometric and spectroscopic surveys of the Andromeda galaxy (M31) have discovered tidal debris features throughout M31’s stellar halo. We present stellar kinematics and metallicities in fields with identified substructure from our on-going SPLASH survey of M31 red giant branch stars with the DEIMOS spectrograph on the Keck II 10-m telescope. Radial velocity criteria are used to isolate members of the kinematically-cold substructures. The substructures are shown to be metal-rich relative to the rest of the dynamically hot stellar population in the fields in which they are found. We calculate the mean metallicity and average surface brightness of the various kinematical components in each field, and show that, on average, higher surface brightness features tend to be more metal-rich than lower surface brightness features. Simulations of stellar halo formation via accretion in a cosmological context are used to illustrate that the observed trend can be explained as a natural consequence of the observed dwarf galaxy mass-metallicity relation. A significant spread in metallicity at a given surface brightness is seen in the data; we show that this is due to time effects, namely the variation in the time since accretion of the tidal streams’ progenitor onto the host halo. We show that in this theoretical framework a relationship between the alpha-enhancement and surface brightness of tidal streams is expected, which arises from the varying times of accretion of the progenitor satellites onto the host halo. Thus, measurements of the alpha-enrichment, metallicity, and surface brightness of tidal debris can be used to reconstruct the luminosity and time of accretion onto the host halo of the progenitors of tidal streams.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: @ 2009. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0201 Astronomical and Space Sciences, 0202 Atomic, Molecular, Nuclear, Particle and Plasma Physics, 0306 Physical Chemistry (incl. Structural)
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: American Astronomical Society; IOP Publishing
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 29 Apr 2021 10:26
Last Modified: 29 Apr 2021 10:26
DOI or Identification number: 10.1088/0004-637X/701/1/776
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/14887

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