skip to main content

Search for: All records

Creators/Authors contains: "Pfeffer, Joel"

Note: When clicking on a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) number, you will be taken to an external site maintained by the publisher. Some full text articles may not yet be available without a charge during the embargo (administrative interval).
What is a DOI Number?

Some links on this page may take you to non-federal websites. Their policies may differ from this site.


    We study the present-day rotational velocity (Vrot) and velocity dispersion (σ) profiles of the globular cluster (GC) systems in a sample of 50 lenticular (S0) galaxies from the E-MOSAICS galaxy formation simulations. We find that $82{{\ \rm per\ cent}}$ of the galaxies have GCs that are rotating along the photometric major axis of the galaxy (aligned), while the remaining $18{{\ \rm per\ cent}}$ of the galaxies do not (misaligned). This is generally consistent with the observations from the SLUGGS survey. For the aligned galaxies, classified as peaked and outwardly decreasing ($49{{\ \rm per\ cent}}$), flat ($24{{\ \rm per\ cent}}$), and increasing ($27{{\ \rm per\ cent}}$) based on the Vrot/σ profiles out to large radii, we do not find any clear correlation between these present-day Vrot/σ profiles of the GCs and the past merger histories of the S0 galaxies, unlike in previous simulations of galaxy stars. For just over half of the misaligned galaxies, we find that the GC misalignment is the result of a major merger within the last $10\, \mathrm{Gyr}$ so that the ex-situ GCs are misaligned by an angle between 0° (co-rotation) and 180° (counter-rotation), with respect to the in situ GCs, depending on the orbital configurationmore »of the merging galaxies. For the remaining misaligned galaxies, we suggest that the in situ metal-poor GCs, formed at early times, have undergone more frequent kinematic perturbations than the in situ metal-rich GCs. We also find that the GCs accreted early and the in situ GCs are predominantly located within 0.2 virial radii (R200) from the centre of galaxies in 3D phase-space diagrams.

    « less
  2. 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.

    Globular cluster ages provide both an important test of models of globular cluster formation and a powerful method to constrain the assembly history of galaxies. Unfortunately, measuring the ages of unresolved old stellar populations has proven challenging. Here, we present a novel technique that combines optical photometry with metallicity constraints from near-infrared spectroscopy in order to measure ages. After testing the method on globular clusters in the Milky Way and its satellite galaxies, we apply our technique to three massive early-type galaxies using data from the SAGES Legacy Unifying Globulars and GalaxieS (SLUGGS) survey. The three SLUGGS galaxies and the Milky Way show dramatically different globular cluster age and metallicity distributions, with NGC 1407 and the Milky Way showing mostly old globular clusters, while NGC 3115 and NGC 3377 show a range of globular ages. This diversity implies different galaxy formation histories and that the globular cluster optical colour–metallicity relation is not universal as is commonly assumed in globular cluster studies. We find a correlation between the median age of the metal-rich globular cluster populations and the age of the field star populations, in line with models where globular cluster formation is a natural outcome of high-intensity star formation.