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Title: The baryon cycle of dwarf galaxies: dark, bursty, gas-rich polluters

We present results from a fully cosmological, very high-resolution, ΛCDM simulation of a group of seven field dwarf galaxies with present-day virial masses in the range M {sub vir} = 4.4 × 10{sup 8}-3.6 × 10{sup 10} M {sub ☉}. The simulation includes a blastwave scheme for supernova feedback, a star-formation recipe based on a high gas density threshold, metal-dependent radiative cooling, a scheme for the turbulent diffusion of metals and thermal energy, and a uniform UV background. The properties of the simulated dwarfs are strongly modulated by the depth of the gravitational potential well. All three halos with M {sub vir} < 10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} are devoid of stars, as they never reach the density threshold for star formation of 100 atoms cm{sup –3}. The other four, M {sub vir} > 10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} dwarfs have blue colors, low star-formation efficiencies, high cold gas-to-stellar mass ratios, and low stellar metallicities. Their bursty star-formation histories are characterized by peak specific star-formation rates in excess of 50-100 Gyr{sup –1}, far outside the realm of normal, more massive galaxies. The median stellar age of the simulated galaxies decreases with decreasing halo mass, with the two M {sub vir}more » ≅ 2-3 × 10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} dwarfs being predominantly young, and the two more massive systems hosting intermediate and older populations. The cosmologically young dwarfs are lit up by tidal interactions, have compact morphologies, and have metallicities and cold gas fractions similar to the relatively quiescent, extremely metal-deficient dwarf population. Metal-enriched galactic outflows produce sub-solar effective yields and pollute with heavy elements a megaparsec-size region of the intergalactic medium, but are not sufficient to completely quench star-formation activity and are absent in the faintest dwarfs.« less
Authors:
; ;  [1] ;  [2] ;  [3]
  1. Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of California, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95064 (United States)
  2. Astronomy Department, University of Washington, Seattle, WA 98195 (United States)
  3. Institute of Theoretical Physics, University of Zurich, Winterthurerstrasse 190, CH-9057 Zurich (Switzerland)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22365131
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 792; Journal Issue: 2; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ATOMS; COLOR; DENSITY; DIFFUSION; DWARF STARS; EFFICIENCY; FEEDBACK; GALAXIES; INTERACTIONS; MASS; METALLICITY; METALS; RADIATIVE COOLING; RESOLUTION; SIMULATION; STARS