Journal Article

Metallicity gradients of disc stars for a cosmologically simulated galaxy

Awat Rahimi, Daisuke Kawata, Carlos Allende Prieto, Chris B. Brook, Brad K. Gibson and Alina Kiessling

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 415, issue 2, pages 1469-1478
Published in print August 2011 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online July 2011 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1365-2966.2011.18793.x
Metallicity gradients of disc stars for a cosmologically simulated galaxy

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We analyse for the first time the radial abundance gradients of the disc stars of a disc galaxy simulated with our three-dimensional, fully cosmological chemodynamical galaxy evolution code gcd+. We study how [Fe/H], [N/O], [O/Fe], [Mg/Fe] and [Si/Fe] vary with galactocentric radius. For the young stars of the disc, we found a negative slope for [Fe/H] and [N/O] but a positive [O/Fe], [Mg/Fe] and [Si/Fe] slope with radius. By analysing the star formation rate at different radii, we found that the simulated disc contains a greater fraction of young stars in the outer regions, while the old stars tend to be concentrated in the inner parts of the disc. This can explain the positive [α/Fe] gradient as well as the negative [N/O] gradient with radius. This radial trend is a natural outcome of an inside-out formation of the disc, regardless of its size and can thus explain the recently observed positive [α/Fe] gradients in the Milky Way disc open clusters.

Keywords: Galaxy: disc; Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics; galaxies: abundances; galaxies: evolution; galaxies: formation; galaxies: interactions

Journal Article.  7701 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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