Fossils of reionization in the local group

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We use a combination of high-resolution gas dynamics simulations of high-redshift dwarf galaxies and dissipationless simulations of a Milky Way sized halo to estimate the expected abundance and spatial distribution of the dwarf satellite galaxies that formed most of their stars around z {approx} 8 and evolved only little since then. Such galaxies can be considered as fossils of the reionization era, and studying their properties could provide a direct window into the early, pre-reionization stages of galaxy formation. We show that 5-15% of the objects existing at z {approx} 8 do indeed survive until the present in the MW ... continued below

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8 pages

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Gnedin, Nickolay Y.; /Fermilab /KICP, Chicago /Chicago U., EFI; Kravtsov, Andrey V. & /KICP, Chicago /Chicago U., EFI /Chicago U., Astron. Astrophys. Ctr. January 1, 2006.

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We use a combination of high-resolution gas dynamics simulations of high-redshift dwarf galaxies and dissipationless simulations of a Milky Way sized halo to estimate the expected abundance and spatial distribution of the dwarf satellite galaxies that formed most of their stars around z {approx} 8 and evolved only little since then. Such galaxies can be considered as fossils of the reionization era, and studying their properties could provide a direct window into the early, pre-reionization stages of galaxy formation. We show that 5-15% of the objects existing at z {approx} 8 do indeed survive until the present in the MW like environment without significant evolution. This implies that it is plausible that the fossil dwarf galaxies do exist in the Local Group. Because such galaxies form their stellar systems early during the period of active merging and accretion, they should have spheroidal morphology regardless of their current distance from the host galaxy. We show that both the expected luminosity function and spatial distribution of dark matter halos which are likely to host fossil galaxies agree reasonably well with the observed distributions of the luminous (L{sub V} > 10{sup 6} Lsun) Local Group fossil candidates near the host galaxy (d<200 kpc). However, the predicted abundance is substantially larger (by a factor of 2-3) for fainter galaxies (L{sub V} < 10{sup 6} Lsun) at larger distances (d>300 kpc). We discuss several possible explanations for this discrepancy.

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8 pages

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  • Journal Name: Astrophys.J.645:1054-1061,2006

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  • Report No.: FERMILAB-PUB-06-024-A
  • Grant Number: AC02-76CH03000
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 879027
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc873445

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  • January 1, 2006

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  • Sept. 21, 2016, 2:29 a.m.

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  • Dec. 5, 2016, 4:16 p.m.

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Gnedin, Nickolay Y.; /Fermilab /KICP, Chicago /Chicago U., EFI; Kravtsov, Andrey V. & /KICP, Chicago /Chicago U., EFI /Chicago U., Astron. Astrophys. Ctr. Fossils of reionization in the local group, article, January 1, 2006; Batavia, Illinois. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc873445/: accessed September 24, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.