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    We investigate cosmological structure formation in fuzzy dark matter (FDM) with the attractive self-interaction (SI) with numerical simulations. Such a SI would arise if the FDM boson were an ultra-light axion, which has a strong CP symmetry-breaking scale (decay constant). Although weak, the attractive SI may be strong enough to counteract the quantum ‘pressure’ and alter structure formation. We find in our simulations that the SI can enhance small-scale structure formation, and soliton cores above a critical mass undergo a phase transition, transforming from dilute to dense solitons.

  2. ABSTRACT Self-interacting dark matter (SIDM) models have received great attention over the past decade as solutions to the small-scale puzzles of astrophysics. Though there are different implementations of dark matter (DM) self-interactions in N-body codes of structure formation, there has not been a systematic study to compare the predictions of these different implementations. We investigate the implementation of dark matter self-interactions in two simulation codes:gizmo and arepo. We begin with identical initial conditions for an isolated 1010 M⊙ dark matter halo and investigate the evolution of the density and velocity dispersion profiles in gizmo and arepo for SIDM cross-section over mass of 1, 5, and 50 $\rm cm^2\, g^{-1}$. Our tests are restricted to the core expansion phase, where the core density decreases and core radius increases with time. We find better than 30 per cent agreement between the codes for the density profile in this phase of evolution, with the agreement improving at higher resolution. We find that varying code-specific SIDM parameters changes the central halo density by less than 10 per cent outside of the convergence radius. We argue that SIDM core formation is robust across the two different schemes and conclude that these codes can reliably differentiate between cross-sections of 1, 5, and 50 $\rm cm^2\,more »g^{-1}$, but finer distinctions would require further investigation.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 6, 2023
  3. null (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT We present a suite of baryonic cosmological zoom-in simulations of self-interacting dark matter (SIDM) haloes within the ‘Feedback In Realistic Environment’ (FIRE) project. The three simulated haloes have virial masses of $\sim 10^{12}\, \text{M}_\odot$ at z = 0, and we study velocity-independent self-interaction cross sections of 1 and 10 ${\rm cm^2 \, g^{-1}}$. We study star formation rates and the shape of dark matter density profiles of the parent haloes in both cold dark matter (CDM) and SIDM models. Galaxies formed in the SIDM haloes have higher star formation rates at z ≤ 1, resulting in more massive galaxies compared to the CDM simulations. While both CDM and SIDM simulations show diverse shape of the dark matter density profiles, the SIDM haloes can reach higher and more steep central densities within few kpcs compared to the CDM haloes. We identify a correlation between the build-up of the stars within the half-mass radii of the galaxies and the growth in the central dark matter densities. The thermalization process in the SIDM haloes is enhanced in the presence of a dense stellar component. Hence, SIDM haloes with highly concentrated baryonic profiles are predicted to have higher central dark matter densities thanmore »the CDM haloes. Overall, the SIDM haloes are more responsive to the presence of a massive baryonic distribution than their CDM counterparts.« less
  4. ABSTRACT Bose–Einstein condensate dark matter (BECDM, also known as fuzzy dark matter) is motivated by fundamental physics and has recently received significant attention as a serious alternative to the established cold dark matter (CDM) model. We perform cosmological simulations of BECDM gravitationally coupled to baryons and investigate structure formation at high redshifts (z ≳ 5) for a boson mass m = 2.5 × 10−22 eV, exploring the dynamical effects of its wavelike nature on the cosmic web and the formation of first galaxies. Our BECDM simulations are directly compared to CDM as well as to simulations where the dynamical quantum potential is ignored and only the initial suppression of the power spectrum is considered – a warm dark matter-like (‘WDM’) model often used as a proxy for BECDM. Our simulations confirm that ‘WDM’ is a good approximation to BECDM on large cosmological scales even in the presence of the baryonic feedback. Similarities also exist on small scales, with primordial star formation happening both in isolated haloes and continuously along cosmic filaments; the latter effect is not present in CDM. Global star formation and metal enrichment in these first galaxies are delayed in BECDM/‘WDM’ compared to the CDM case: in BECDM/‘WDM’ first starsmore »form at z ∼ 13/13.5, while in CDM star formation starts at z ∼ 35. The signature of BECDM interference, not present in ‘WDM’, is seen in the evolved dark matter power spectrum: although the small-scale structure is initially suppressed, power on kpc scales is added at lower redshifts. Our simulations lay the groundwork for realistic simulations of galaxy formation in BECDM.« less
  5. Abstract The quenching “maintenance” and “cooling flow” problems are important from the Milky Way through massive cluster elliptical galaxies. Previous work has shown that some source of energy beyond that from stars and pure magnetohydrodynamic processes is required, perhaps from AGN, but even the qualitative form of this energetic input remains uncertain. Different scenarios include thermal “heating,” direct wind or momentum injection, cosmic ray heating or pressure support, or turbulent “stirring” of the intra-cluster medium (ICM). We investigate these in 1012 − 1014 M⊙ halos using high-resolution non-cosmological simulations with the FIRE-2 (Feedback In Realistic Environments) stellar feedback model, including simplified toy energy-injection models, where we arbitrarily vary the strength, injection scale, and physical form of the energy. We explore which scenarios can quench without violating observational constraints on energetics or ICM gas. We show that turbulent stirring in the central ∼100 kpc, or cosmic-ray injection, can both maintain a stable low-SFR halo for >Gyr timescales with modest energy input, by providing a non-thermal pressure which stably lowers the core density and cooling rates. In both cases, associated thermal-heating processes are negligible. Turbulent stirring preserves cool-core features while mixing condensed core gas into the hotter halo and is by far the mostmore »energy efficient model. Pure thermal heating or nuclear isotropic momentum injection require vastly larger energy, are less efficient in lower-mass halos, easily over-heat cores, and require fine-tuning to avoid driving unphysical temperature gradients or gas expulsion from the halo center.« less