Journal Article

Dynamical studies of cluster pairs in the Magellanic Clouds

M. R. de Oliveira, H. Dottori and E. Bica

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 295, issue 4, pages 921-932
Published in print April 1998 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 1998 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Dynamical studies of cluster pairs in the Magellanic Clouds

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We performed N-body simulations of star cluster encounters with Hernquist's TREECODE in a CRAY YMP-2E computer under different initial conditions (relative positions and velocities, cluster sizes, masses and concentration degrees). The total number of particles per simulation ranged from 1024 to 20480. These models are compared with a series of isodensity maps of cluster pairs in the Magellanic Clouds. Evidence is found that during the interactions, transient morphological effects such as an expanded halo, isophotal deformation and isophotal twisting can occur as a result of tidal effects and dynamical friction. The simulations also show that different outcomes are possible depending on the initial parameters: (i) long-standing changes of concentration degree can occur after the collision; (ii) one member can disaggregate; or (iii) the pair can coalesce into a single cluster with a distinct structure compared with the original ones. These simulations can reproduce a wide range of morphological structures in observed cluster pairs.

Keywords: celestial mechanics, stellar dynamics; Magellanic Clouds; galaxies: star clusters

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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