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    Recent results from chemical tagging studies using Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment data suggest a strong link between the chemical abundance patterns of stars found within globular clusters (GC), and chemically peculiar populations in the Galactic halo field. In this paper, we analyse the chemical compositions of stars within the cluster body and tidal streams of Palomar 5, a GC that is being tidally disrupted by interaction with the Galactic gravitational potential. We report the identification of nitrogen-rich (N-rich) stars both within and beyond the tidal radius of Palomar 5, with the latter being clearly aligned with the cluster tidal streams; this acts as confirmation that N-rich stars are lost to the Galactic halo from GCs, and provides support to the hypothesis that field N-rich stars identified by various groups have a GC origin.

  2. ABSTRACT Recent evidence based on APOGEE data for stars within a few kpc of the Galactic Centre suggests that dissolved globular clusters (GCs) contribute significantly to the stellar mass budget of the inner halo. In this paper, we enquire into the origins of tracers of GC dissolution, N-rich stars, that are located in the inner 4 kpc of the Milky Way. From an analysis of the chemical compositions of these stars, we establish that about 30 per cent of the N-rich stars previously identified in the inner Galaxy may have an accreted origin. This result is confirmed by an analysis of the kinematic properties of our sample. The specific frequency of N-rich stars is quite large in the accreted population, exceeding that of its in situ counterparts by near an order of magnitude, in disagreement with predictions from numerical simulations. We hope that our numbers provide a useful test to models of GC formation and destruction.
  3. Abstract We apply a novel statistical analysis to measurements of 16 elemental abundances in 34,410 Milky Way disk stars from the final data release (DR17) of APOGEE-2. Building on recent work, we fit median abundance ratio trends [X/Mg] versus [Mg/H] with a 2-process model, which decomposes abundance patterns into a “prompt” component tracing core-collapse supernovae and a “delayed” component tracing Type Ia supernovae. For each sample star, we fit the amplitudes of these two components, then compute the residuals Δ[X/H] from this two-parameter fit. The rms residuals range from ∼0.01–0.03 dex for the most precisely measured APOGEE abundances to ∼0.1 dex for Na, V, and Ce. The correlations of residuals reveal a complex underlying structure, including a correlated element group comprised of Ca, Na, Al, K, Cr, and Ce and a separate group comprised of Ni, V, Mn, and Co. Selecting stars poorly fit by the 2-process model reveals a rich variety of physical outliers and sometimes subtle measurement errors. Residual abundances allow for the comparison of populations controlled for differences in metallicity and [ α /Fe]. Relative to the main disk ( R = 3–13 kpc), we find nearly identical abundance patterns in the outer disk ( R =more »15–17 kpc), 0.05–0.2 dex depressions of multiple elements in LMC and Gaia Sausage/Enceladus stars, and wild deviations (0.4–1 dex) of multiple elements in ω Cen. The residual abundance analysis opens new opportunities for discovering chemically distinctive stars and stellar populations, for empirically constraining nucleosynthetic yields, and for testing chemical evolution models that include stochasticity in the production and redistribution of elements.« less
  4. ABSTRACT We report evidence from APOGEE for the presence of a new metal-poor stellar structure located within ∼4 kpc of the Galactic Centre. Characterized by a chemical composition resembling those of low-mass satellites of the Milky Way, this new inner Galaxy structure (IGS) seems to be chemically and dynamically detached from more metal-rich populations in the inner Galaxy. We conjecture that this structure is associated with an accretion event that likely occurred in the early life of the Milky Way. Comparing the mean elemental abundances of this structure with predictions from cosmological numerical simulations, we estimate that the progenitor system had a stellar mass of ∼5 × 108 M⊙, or approximately twice the mass of the recently discovered Gaia-Enceladus/Sausage system. We find that the accreted:in situ ratio within our metal-poor ([Fe/H] < –0.8) bulge sample is somewhere between 1:3 and 1:2, confirming predictions of cosmological numerical simulations by various groups.
  5. ABSTRACT The contribution of dissolved globular clusters (GCs) to the stellar content of the Galactic halo is a key constraint on models for GC formation and destruction, and the mass assembly history of the Milky Way. Earlier results from APOGEE pointed to a large contribution of destroyed GCs to the stellar content of the inner halo, by as much as 25 ${{\ \rm per\ cent}}$, which is an order of magnitude larger than previous estimates for more distant regions of the halo. We set out to measure the ratio between nitrogen-rich (N-rich) and normal halo field stars, as a function of distance, by performing density modelling of halo field populations in APOGEE DR16. Our results show that at 1.5 kpc from the Galactic Centre, N-rich stars contribute a much higher 16.8$^{+10.0}_{-7.0}\, {{\ \rm per\ cent}}$ fraction to the total stellar halo mass budget than the 2.7$^{+1.0}_{-0.8}\, {{\ \rm per\ cent}}$ ratio contributed at 10 kpc. Under the assumption that N-rich stars are former GC members that now reside in the stellar halo field, and assuming the ratio between first and second population GC stars being 1:2, we estimate a total contribution from disrupted GC stars of the order of 27.5$^{+15.4}_{-11.5}\, {{\ \rmmore »per\ cent}}$ at r = 1.5 kpc and 4.2$^{+1.5}_{-1.3}\, {{\ \rm per\ cent}}$ at r = 10 kpc. Furthermore, since our methodology requires fitting a density model to the stellar halo, we integrate such density within a spherical shell from 1.5 to 15 kpc in radius, and find a total stellar mass arising from dissolved and/or evaporated GCs of MGC,total = 9.6$^{+4.0}_{-2.6}\, \times$ 107 M⊙.« less
  6. ABSTRACT Studies of the kinematics and chemical compositions of Galactic globular clusters (GCs) enable the reconstruction of the history of star formation, chemical evolution, and mass assembly of the Galaxy. Using the latest data release (DR16) of the SDSS/APOGEE survey, we identify 3090 stars associated with 46 GCs. Using a previously defined kinematic association, we break the sample down into eight separate groups and examine how the kinematics-based classification maps into chemical composition space, considering only α (mostly Si and Mg) elements and Fe. Our results show that (i) the loci of both in situ and accreted subgroups in chemical space match those of their field counterparts; (ii) GCs from different individual accreted subgroups occupy the same locus in chemical space. This could either mean that they share a similar origin or that they are associated with distinct satellites which underwent similar chemical enrichment histories; (iii) the chemical compositions of the GCs associated with the low orbital energy subgroup defined by Massari and collaborators is broadly consistent with an in situ origin. However, at the low-metallicity end, the distinction between accreted and in situ populations is blurred; (iv) regarding the status of GCs whose origin is ambiguous, we conclude the following: the positionmore »in Si–Fe plane suggests an in situ origin for Liller 1 and a likely accreted origin for NGC 5904 and NGC 6388. The case of NGC 288 is unclear, as its orbital properties suggest an accretion origin, its chemical composition suggests it may have formed in situ.« less

    Gaia DR2 has provided an unprecedented wealth of information about the kinematics of stars in the Solar neighbourhood, and has highlighted the degree of features in the Galactic disc. We confront the data with a range of bar and spiral models in both action-angle space, and the RG–vϕ plane. We find that the phase mixing induced by transient spiral structure creates ridges and arches in the local kinematics which are consistent with the Gaia data. We are able to produce a qualitatively good match to the data when combined with a bar with a variety of pattern speeds, and show that it is non-trivial to decouple the effects of the bar and the spiral structure.


    Studies of the ages, abundances, and motions of individual stars in the Milky Way provide one of the best ways to study the evolution of disc galaxies over cosmic time. The formation of the Milky Way’s barred inner region in particular is a crucial piece of the puzzle of disc galaxy evolution. Using data from APOGEE and Gaia, we present maps of the kinematics, elemental abundances, and age of the Milky Way bulge and disc that show the barred structure of the inner Milky Way in unprecedented detail. The kinematic maps allow a direct, purely kinematic determination of the bar’s pattern speed of $41\pm 3\, \mathrm{km\, s}^{-1}\, \mathrm{kpc}^{-1}$ and of its shape and radial profile. We find the bar’s age, metallicity, and abundance ratios to be the same as those of the oldest stars in the disc that are formed in its turbulent beginnings, while stars in the bulge outside of the bar are younger and more metal-rich. This implies that the bar likely formed ${\approx}8\, \mathrm{Gyr}$ ago, when the decrease in turbulence in the gas disc allowed a thin disc to form that quickly became bar-unstable. The bar’s formation therefore stands as a crucial epoch in the evolutionmore »of the Milky Way, a picture that is in line with the evolutionary path that emerges from observations of the gas kinematics in external disc galaxies over the last ${\approx}10\, \mathrm{Gyr}$.

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