Journal Article

The lives of high-redshift mergers

Tom McCavana, Miroslav Micic, Geraint F. Lewis, Manodeep Sinha, Sanjib Sharma, Kelly Holley-Bockelmann and Joss Bland-Hawthorn

in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society

Published on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society

Volume 424, issue 1, pages 361-371
Published in print July 2012 | ISSN: 0035-8711
Published online July 2012 | e-ISSN: 1365-2966 | DOI:
The lives of high-redshift mergers

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We present a comparative study of recent works on merger time-scales with dynamical friction and find a strong contrast between idealized/isolated mergers and mergers from a cosmological volume. Our study measures the duration of mergers in a cosmological N-body simulation of dark matter, with emphasis on higher redshifts (z≤ 10) and a lower mass range. In our analysis we consider and compare two merger definitions: tidal disruption and coalescence. We find that the merger-time formula proposed by Jiang et al. describes our results well and conclude that cosmologically motivated merger-time formulae provide a more versatile and statistically robust approximation for practical applications such as semi-analytic/hybrid models.

Keywords: galaxies: evolution; galaxies: kinematics and dynamics; dark matter

Journal Article.  7515 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics

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