Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations of Disk GalaxyFormation: the Magnetization of The Cold and Warm Medium

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Using magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) adaptive mesh refinement simulations, we study the formation and early evolution of disk galaxies with a magnetized interstellar medium. For a 10{sup 10} M{sub {circle_dot}} halo with initial NFW dark matter and gas profiles, we impose a uniform 10{sup -9} G magnetic field and follow its collapse, disk formation and evolution up to 1 Gyr. Comparing to a purely hydrodynamic simulation with the same initial condition, we find that a protogalactic field of this strength does not significantly influence the global disk properties. At the same time, the initial magnetic fields are quickly amplified by the differentially ... continued below

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13 pages

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Wang, Peng; Abel, Tom & /KIPAC, Menlo Park /Santa Barbara, KITP December 18, 2007.

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Using magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) adaptive mesh refinement simulations, we study the formation and early evolution of disk galaxies with a magnetized interstellar medium. For a 10{sup 10} M{sub {circle_dot}} halo with initial NFW dark matter and gas profiles, we impose a uniform 10{sup -9} G magnetic field and follow its collapse, disk formation and evolution up to 1 Gyr. Comparing to a purely hydrodynamic simulation with the same initial condition, we find that a protogalactic field of this strength does not significantly influence the global disk properties. At the same time, the initial magnetic fields are quickly amplified by the differentially rotating turbulent disk. After the initial rapid amplification lasting {approx} 500 Myr, subsequent field amplification appears self-regulated. As a result, highly magnetized material begin to form above and below the disk. Interestingly, the field strengths in the self-regulated regime agrees well with the observed fields in the Milky Way galaxy both in the warm and the cold HI phase and do not change appreciably with time. Most of the cold phase shows a dispersion of order ten in the magnetic field strength. The global azimuthal magnetic fields reverse at different radii and the amplitude declines as a function of radius of the disk. By comparing the estimated star formation rate (SFR) in hydrodynamic and MHD simulations, we find that after the magnetic field strength saturates, magnetic forces provide further support in the cold gas and lead to a decline of the SFR.

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13 pages

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  • Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal

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  • Report No.: SLAC-PUB-13029
  • Grant Number: AC02-76SF00515
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 921290
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc898882

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  • December 18, 2007

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  • Sept. 27, 2016, 1:39 a.m.

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  • Dec. 7, 2016, 4:50 p.m.

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Wang, Peng; Abel, Tom & /KIPAC, Menlo Park /Santa Barbara, KITP. Magnetohydrodynamic Simulations of Disk GalaxyFormation: the Magnetization of The Cold and Warm Medium, article, December 18, 2007; [Menlo Park, California]. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc898882/: accessed September 23, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.