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    The intracluster medium of galaxy clusters is an extremely hot and diffuse, nearly collisionless plasma, which hosts dynamically important magnetic fields of ∼μG strength. Seed magnetic fields of much weaker strength of astrophysical or primordial origin can be present in the intracluster medium. In collisional plasmas, which can be approximated in the magnetohydrodynamical (MHD) limit, the turbulent dynamo mechanism can amplify weak seed fields to strong dynamical levels efficiently by converting turbulent kinetic energy into magnetic energy. However, the viability of this mechanism in weakly collisional or completely collisionless plasma is much less understood. In this study, we explore the properties of the collisionless turbulent dynamo using three-dimensional hybrid-kinetic particle-in-cell simulations. We explore the properties of the collisionless turbulent dynamo in the kinematic regime for different values of the magnetic Reynolds number, Rm, initial magnetic-to-kinetic energy ratio, (Emag/Ekin)i, and initial Larmor ratio, (rLarmor/Lbox)i, i.e. the ratio of the Larmor radius to the size of the turbulent system. We find that in the ‘un-magnetized’ regime, (rLarmor/Lbox)i > 1, the critical magnetic Reynolds number for the dynamo action Rmcrit ≈ 107 ± 3. In the ‘magnetized’ regime, (rLarmor/Lbox)i ≲ 1, we find a marginally higher Rmcrit = 124 ± 8. We find that the growth rate of the magnetic energy does not depend on the strength of the seed magnetic field when the initial magnetization is fixed. We also study the distribution and evolution of the pressure anisotropy in the collisionless plasma and compare our results with the MHD turbulent dynamo.

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    Gas in the central regions of cool-core clusters and other massive haloes has a short cooling time (≲1 Gyr). Theoretical models predict that this gas is susceptible to multiphase condensation, in which cold gas is expected to condense out of the hot phase if the ratio of the thermal instability growth time-scale (tti) to the free-fall time (tff) is tti/tff ≲ 10. The turbulent mixing time tmix is another important time-scale: if tmix is short enough, the fluctuations are mixed before they can cool. In this study, we perform high-resolution (5122 × 768–10242 × 1536 resolution elements) hydrodynamic simulations of turbulence in a stratified medium, including radiative cooling of the gas. We explore the parameter space of tti/tff and tti/tmix relevant to galaxy and cluster haloes. We also study the effect of the steepness of the entropy profile, the strength of turbulent forcing and the nature of turbulent forcing (natural mixture versus compressive modes) on multiphase gas condensation. We find that larger values of tti/tff or tti/tmix generally imply stability against multiphase gas condensation, whereas larger density fluctuations (e.g. due to compressible turbulence) promote multiphase gas condensation. We propose a new criterion min (tti/min (tmix, tff)) ≲ c2 × exp (c1σs) for when the halo becomes multiphase, where σs denotes the amplitude of logarithmic density fluctuations and c1 ≃ 6, c2 ≃ 1.8 from an empirical fit to our results.

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  3. Abstract

    We use a suite of 3D simulations of star-forming molecular clouds, with and without stellar feedback, magnetic fields, and driven turbulence, to study the compression and expansion rates of the gas as functions of density. We show that, around the mean density, supersonic turbulence promotes rough equilibrium between the amounts of compressing and expanding gas, consistent with continuous gas cycling between high- and low-density states. We find that the inclusion of protostellar jets produces rapidly expanding and compressing low-density gas. We find that the gas mass flux peaks at the transition between the lognormal and power-law forms of the density probability distribution function (PDF). This is consistent with the transition density tracking the post-shock density, which promotes an enhancement of mass at this density (i.e., shock compression and filament formation). At high densities, the gas dynamics are dominated by self-gravity: the compression rate in all of our runs matches the rate of the run with only gravity, suggesting that processes other than self-gravity have little effect at these densities. The net gas mass flux becomes constant at a density below the sink formation threshold, where it equals the star formation rate. The density at which the net gas mass flux equals the star formation rate is one order of magnitude lower than our sink threshold density, corresponds to the formation of the second power-law tail in the density PDF, and sets the overall star formation rates of these simulations.

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    Turbulence plays a crucial role in shaping the structure of the interstellar medium. The ratio of the three-dimensional density contrast ($\sigma _{\rho /\rho _0}$) to the turbulent sonic Mach number ($\mathcal {M}$) of an isothermal, compressible gas describes the ratio of solenoidal to compressive modes in the turbulent acceleration field of the gas, and is parameterized by the turbulence driving parameter: $b=\sigma _{\rho /\rho _0}/\mathcal {M}$. The turbulence driving parameter ranges from b = 1/3 (purely solenoidal) to b = 1 (purely compressive), with b = 0.38 characterizing the natural mixture (1/3 compressive, 2/3 solenoidal) of the two driving modes. Here, we present a new method for recovering $\sigma _{\rho /\rho _0}$, $\mathcal {M}$, and b, from observations on galactic scales, using a roving kernel to produce maps of these quantities from column density and centroid velocity maps. We apply our method to high-resolution ${\rm H}\,\rm{\small I}$ emission observations of the Small Magellanic Cloud (SMC) from the GASKAP-HI survey. We find that the turbulence driving parameter varies between b ∼ 0.3 and 1.0 within the main body of the SMC, but the median value converges to b ∼ 0.51, suggesting that the turbulence is overall driven more compressively (b > 0.38). We observe no correlation between the b parameter and ${\rm H}\,\rm{\small I}$ or H α intensity, indicating that compressive driving of ${\rm H}\,\rm{\small I}$ turbulence cannot be determined solely by observing ${\rm H}\,\rm{\small I}$ or H α emission density, and that velocity information must also be considered. Further investigation is required to link our findings to potential driving mechanisms such as star-formation feedback, gravitational collapse, or cloud–cloud collisions.

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    The Central Molecular Zone (CMZ; the central ∼500 pc of the Galaxy) is a kinematically unusual environment relative to the Galactic disc, with high-velocity dispersions and a steep size–linewidth relation of the molecular clouds. In addition, the CMZ region has a significantly lower star formation rate (SFR) than expected by its large amount of dense gas. An important factor in explaining the low SFR is the turbulent state of the star-forming gas, which seems to be dominated by rotational modes. However, the turbulence driving mechanism remains unclear. In this work, we investigate how the Galactic gravitational potential affects the turbulence in CMZ clouds. We focus on the CMZ cloud G0.253+0.016 (‘the Brick’), which is very quiescent and unlikely to be kinematically dominated by stellar feedback. We demonstrate that several kinematic properties of the Brick arise naturally in a cloud-scale hydrodynamics simulation, that takes into account the Galactic gravitational potential. These properties include the line-of-sight velocity distribution, the steepened size–linewidth relation, and the predominantly solenoidal nature of the turbulence. Within the simulation, these properties result from the Galactic shear in combination with the cloud’s gravitational collapse. This is a strong indication that the Galactic gravitational potential plays a crucial role in shaping the CMZ gas kinematics, and is a major contributor to suppressing the SFR, by inducing predominantly solenoidal turbulent modes.

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  6. Abstract Using a suite of 3D hydrodynamical simulations of star-forming molecular clouds, we investigate how the density probability distribution function (PDF) changes when including gravity, turbulence, magnetic fields, and protostellar outflows and heating. We find that the density PDF is not lognormal when outflows and self-gravity are considered. Self-gravity produces a power-law tail at high densities, and the inclusion of stellar feedback from protostellar outflows and heating produces significant time-varying deviations from a lognormal distribution at low densities. The simulation with outflows has an excess of diffuse gas compared to the simulations without outflows, exhibits an increased average sonic Mach number, and maintains a slower star formation rate (SFR) over the entire duration of the run. We study the mass transfer between the diffuse gas in the lognormal peak of the PDF, the collapsing gas in the power-law tail, and the stars. We find that the mass fraction in the power-law tail is constant, such that the stars form out of the power-law gas at the same rate at which the gas from the lognormal part replenishes the power law. We find that turbulence does not provide significant support in the dense gas associated with the power-law tail. When including outflows and magnetic fields in addition to driven turbulence, the rate of mass transfer from the lognormal to the power law, and then to the stars, becomes significantly slower, resulting in slower SFRs and longer depletion times. 
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  7. null (Ed.)
  8. ABSTRACT We use the angular two-point correlation function (TPCF) to investigate the hierarchical distribution of young star clusters in 12 local (3–18 Mpc) star-forming galaxies using star cluster catalogs obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) as part of the Treasury Program Legacy ExtraGalactic UV Survey. The sample spans a range of different morphological types, allowing us to infer how the physical properties of the galaxy affect the spatial distribution of the clusters. We also prepare a range of physically motivated toy models to compare with and interpret the observed features in the TPCFs. We find that, conforming to earlier studies, young clusters ($T \lesssim 10\, \mathrm{Myr}$) have power-law TPCFs that are characteristic of fractal distributions with a fractal dimension D2, and this scale-free nature extends out to a maximum scale lcorr beyond which the distribution becomes Poissonian. However, lcorr, and D2 vary significantly across the sample, and are correlated with a number of host galaxy physical properties, suggesting that there are physical differences in the underlying star cluster distributions. We also find that hierarchical structuring weakens with age, evidenced by flatter TPCFs for older clusters ($T \gtrsim 10\, \mathrm{Myr}$), that eventually converges to the residual correlation expected from a completely random large-scale radial distribution of clusters in the galaxy in $\sim 100 \, \mathrm{Myr}$. Our study demonstrates that the hierarchical distribution of star clusters evolves with age, and is strongly dependent on the properties of the host galaxy environment. 
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