Download 2001, a spacetime odyssey : proceedings of the Inaugural by M J Duff; James T Liu; Michigan Center for Theoretical PDF

By M J Duff; James T Liu; Michigan Center for Theoretical Physics. Inaugural Conference

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Additional resources for 2001, a spacetime odyssey : proceedings of the Inaugural Conference of the Michigan Center for Theoretical Physics : Michigan, USA, 21-25 May 2001

Sample text

The formation history of a dark matter halo can be described by a ‘merger tree’ that traces all its progenitors, as illustrated in Fig. 3. Such merger trees play an important role in modern galaxy formation theory. Note, however, that illustrations such as Fig. 3 can be misleading. In CDM models part of the growth of a massive halo is due to merging with a large number of much smaller halos, and to a good approximation, such mergers can be thought of as smooth accretion. When two similar mass dark matter halos merge, violent relaxation rapidly transforms the orbital energy of the progenitors into the internal binding energy of the quasi-equilibrium remnant.

1980) announced the detection of a mass for the electron neutrino at a level of cosmological interest (about 30 eV). g. , 1980; Sato & Takahara, 1980; Schramm & Steigman, 1981; Klinkhamer & Norman, 1981), and structure formation in a neutrino-dominated universe was soon worked out in detail. Since neutrinos decouple from other matter and radiation fields while still relativistic, their abundance is very similar to that of CMB photons. Thus, they must have become non-relativistic at the time the Universe became matterdominated, implying thermal motions sufficient to smooth out all structure on scales smaller than a few tens of Mpc.

However, this mass scale is relatively large, and many objects with mass above 1012 M are predicted, and indeed are observed as virialized groups and clusters of galaxies. Apparently, the mass scale of galaxies is not set by gravitational physics alone. In the late 1970s, Silk (1977), Rees & Ostriker (1977) and Binney (1977) suggested that radiative cooling might play an important role in limiting the mass of galaxies. They argued that galaxies can form effectively only in systems where the cooling time is comparable to or shorter than the collapse time, which leads to a characteristic scale of ∼ 1012 M , similar to the mass scale of massive galaxies.

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