Journal Article

Hydrodynamical <i>N</i>-body simulations of coupled dark energy cosmologies

Marco Baldi, Valeria Pettorino, Georg Robbers and Volker Springel

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 403, issue 4, pages 1684-1702
Published in print April 2010 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online April 2010 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
Hydrodynamical N-body simulations of coupled dark energy cosmologies

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If the accelerated expansion of the Universe at the present epoch is driven by a dark energy scalar field, there may well be a non-trivial coupling between the dark energy and the cold dark matter (CDM) fluid. Such interactions give rise to new features in cosmological structure growth, like an additional long-range attractive force between CDM particles, or variations of the dark matter particle mass with time. We have implemented these effects in the N-body code gadget-2 and present results of a series of high-resolution N-body simulations where the dark energy component is directly interacting with the CDM. As a consequence of the new physics, CDM and baryon distributions evolve differently both in the linear and in the non-linear regime of structure formation. Already on large scales, a linear bias develops between these two components, which is further enhanced by the non-linear evolution. We also find, in contrast with previous work, that the density profiles of CDM haloes are less concentrated in coupled dark energy cosmologies compared with ΛCDM, and that this feature does not depend on the initial conditions setup, but is a specific consequence of the extra physics induced by the coupling. Also, the baryon fraction in haloes in the coupled models is significantly reduced below the universal baryon fraction. These features alleviate tensions between observations and the ΛCDM model on small scales. Our methodology is ideally suited to explore the predictions of coupled dark energy models in the fully non-linear regime, which can provide powerful constraints for the viable parameter space of such scenarios.

Keywords: galaxies: formation; cosmology: theory; dark matter

Journal Article.  12797 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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