Monday, May 13, 2013

Daily Paper #2: The Tully-Fisher Zero Point Problem

Today's is a short paper (conference proceedings, just 4 or so pages), dealing with the halo contraction/expansion issue.

Title: The Tully-Fisher Zero Point Problem
Authors: Dutton, van den Bosch & Courteau
Year: 2008,

The authors claim that CDM-based disk formation models can reproduce the slope/scatter of the TFR, however, its zeropoint has not been matched. This problem gets even worse if additional constraints (disk sizes, number densities) are imposed.
The TFR zeropoint can be matched in models if the halo contraction or disk self-gravity are not taken into account, or, as is shown in the article, halo contraction is counteracted by baryon feedback. They model an exponential disk in a NFW halo, obtain its luminosity from observed TFR and its scale-length from the size-luminosity relation. Assuming WMAP3 cosmology and a concentration parameter value from simulations, they solve for the virial mass and obtain rotation curves with and without the halo contraction (see the attached plot). The halo-contraction case is in conflict with both theory and observations, meaning that the halo is too small and has too high spin parameter.
They suggest 3 ways to solve this problem:
  • -- lower the stellar mass-to-light ratio (but there is no known IMF that could provide that). Also, they claim that baryons at the disk and bulge account for at least half of the v2.2 -- I didn't know that (Courteau 1999, Weiner 2001)!
  • -- lower the initial concentration (then the virial radius of a halo is increased) -- but that's incompatible with WMAP3 cosmology.
  • -- turn off or reverse halo contraction: disk galaxies do not form in isolated haloes by smooth cooling. Halo contraction can be reversed by:
    • a) Feedback during adiabatic disk formation, if a large fraction of its mass is removed. It would also explain why galaxy formation is so inefficient (I think they mean that the gas is not converted into stars rapidly).
    • b) Dynamic friction between baryons and DM due to bars or large baryonic clumps (do they mean violent disk instabilities here?). They do not explain the details of such a process here, but I think what happens is that baryons transfer some of their angular momentum to the halo due to formation of massive, concentrated, rapidly moving structures.
The interesting message of the article is that the TFR zeropoint can provide clues into baryon feedback (which should also explain the core-cusp problem of DM haloes, at least that was what A. Dekel and J. Primack maintained at the Jerusalem Winter School). That's important.

No comments:

Post a Comment