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Title: FREQUENT SPIN REORIENTATION OF GALAXIES DUE TO LOCAL INTERACTIONS

We study the evolution of angular momenta of M {sub *} = 10{sup 10}-10{sup 12} M {sub ☉} galaxies utilizing large-scale ultra-high resolution cosmological hydrodynamic simulations and find that the spin of the stellar component changes direction frequently because of interactions with nearby systems, such as major mergers, minor mergers, significant gas inflows, and torques. The rate and nature of change of spin direction cannot be accounted for by large-scale tidal torques, because the rates of the latter fall short by orders of magnitude and because the apparent random swings of the spin direction are inconsistent with the alignment by linear density field. The implications for galaxy formation as well as the intrinsic alignment of galaxies are profound. Assuming the large-scale tidal field is the sole alignment agent, a new picture emerging is that intrinsic alignment of galaxies would be a balance between slow large-scale coherent torquing and fast spin reorientation by local interactions. What is still open is whether other processes, such as feeding galaxies with gas and stars along filaments or sheets, introduce coherence for spin directions of galaxies along the respective structures.
Authors:
 [1]
  1. Princeton University Observatory, Princeton, NJ 08544 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22365910
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal Letters; Journal Volume: 785; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; ALIGNMENT; COMPUTERIZED SIMULATION; COSMOLOGY; FILAMENTS; GALACTIC EVOLUTION; GALAXIES; GRAVITATIONAL LENSES; RANDOMNESS; RESOLUTION; SPIN; STARS; TORQUE