Coupled Cloud/Star Simulations of Disk Galaxies

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Session 76 -- Spiral and Bar Structure in Galaxies
Display presentation, Friday, January 14, 9:30-6:45, Salons I/II Room (Crystal Gateway)

[76.02] Coupled Cloud/Star Simulations of Disk Galaxies

M.J. Currier, N.F. Comins, and P. Shorey (U. of Maine)

We are continuing to develop multi-component simulations of disk galaxies. The present paper reports on the dynamics that occur in a two-dimensional, N-body system in which stars and giant molecular clouds are treated as collision-less and inelastically colliding particles, respectively. We present a systematic survey of the effects of the following free parameters associated with such simulations: the mass of the clouds/the mass of the stars; the inelasticity of the clouds when they collide with each other; the fraction of the system's mass in the inert halo; the number of stars; the number of clouds; and,the initial Toomre Q of the system.

We will show, among other things, that the inelastic cloud dynamics can help surpress the bar-mode instability. Subduing the bar instability with clouds thereby requires less of the total mass to be in the halo than is required for runs without clouds. The clouds also enable spirals to persist for longer times than in runs where clouds are not present.

This work is supported, in part, by a grant from Sun Microsystems, Inc. and by the McNair Scholars Program at the University of Maine.

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