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The cosmic baryon cycle and galaxy mass assembly in the FIRE simulations

Anglés-Alcázar, Daniel and Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André and Kereš, Dušan and Hopkins, Philip F. and Quataert, Eliot and Murray, Norman (2017) The cosmic baryon cycle and galaxy mass assembly in the FIRE simulations. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 470 (4). pp. 4698-4719. ISSN 0035-8711. doi:10.1093/mnras/stx1517.

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We use cosmological simulations from the FIRE (Feedback In Realistic Environments) project to study the baryon cycle and galaxy mass assembly for central galaxies in the halo mass range Mhalo ∼ 10^(10)–10^(13) M_⊙. By tracing cosmic inflows, galactic outflows, gas recycling and merger histories, we quantify the contribution of physically distinct sources of material to galaxy growth. We show that in situ star formation fuelled by fresh accretion dominates the early growth of galaxies of all masses, while the re-accretion of gas previously ejected in galactic winds often dominates the gas supply for a large portion of every galaxy’s evolution. Externally processed material contributes increasingly to the growth of central galaxies at lower redshifts. This includes stars formed ex situ and gas delivered by mergers, as well as smooth intergalactic transfer of gas from other galaxies, an important but previously underappreciated growth mode. By z = 0, wind transfer, i.e. the exchange of gas between galaxies via winds, can dominate gas accretion on to ∼L* galaxies over fresh accretion and standard wind recycling. Galaxies of all masses re-accrete ≳50 per cent of the gas ejected in winds and recurrent recycling is common. The total mass deposited in the intergalactic medium per unit stellar mass formed increases in lower mass galaxies. Re-accretion of wind ejecta occurs over a broad range of time-scales, with median recycling times (∼100–350 Myr) shorter than previously found. Wind recycling typically occurs at the scale radius of the halo, independent of halo mass and redshift, suggesting a characteristic recycling zone around galaxies that scales with the size of the inner halo and the galaxy’s stellar component.

Item Type:Article
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URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Anglés-Alcázar, Daniel0000-0001-5769-4945
Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André0000-0002-4900-6628
Kereš, Dušan0000-0002-1666-7067
Hopkins, Philip F.0000-0003-3729-1684
Quataert, Eliot0000-0001-9185-5044
Additional Information:© 2017 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. Revision Received: 26 October 2016. Received: 08 June 2017. Accepted: 15 June 2017. Published: 20 June 2017. We thank C.R. Christensen, R. Davé, S. Genel, Z. Hafen, A.V. Kravtsov, M. Kriek, A.L. Muratov, B. D. Oppenheimer, A. J. Richings, J. Rojas-Sandoval, R. S. Somerville and S. Veilleux for useful discussions. We greatly appreciate the referee’s thoughtful comments that helped us improve the paper in several places. DAA acknowledges support by a CIERA Postdoctoral Fellowship. CAFG was supported by NSF through grants AST-1412836 and AST-1517491, by NASA through grant NNX15AB22G and by STScI through grants HST-AR-14293.001-A and HST-GO-14268.022-A. DK was supported by NSF grant AST-1412153 and a Cottrell Scholar Award. Support for PFH was provided by an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, NASA ATP Grant NNX14AH35G, and NSF Collaborative Research Grant #1411920 and CAREER grant #1455342. EQ was supported by NASA ATP grant 12-ATP12-0183, a Simons Investigator award from the Simons Foundation, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation. The simulations analysed in this paper were run using the Extreme Science and Engineering Discovery Environment (XSEDE), which is supported by NSF grant ACI-1053575 (allocations TG-AST120025, TG-AST130039 and TG-AST140023). This work greatly benefited from the hospitality of the Aspen Center for Physics, supported by NSF grant PHY-1066293.
Group:Astronomy Department
Funding AgencyGrant Number
CIERA Postdoctoral FellowshipUNSPECIFIED
Cottrell Scholar of Research CorporationUNSPECIFIED
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Simons FoundationUNSPECIFIED
David and Lucile Packard FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:galaxies: evolution, galaxies: formation, galaxies: star formation, intergalactic medium, cosmology: theory
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20170914-073539583
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Official Citation:Daniel Anglés-Alcázar, Claude-André Faucher-Giguère, Dušan Kereš, Philip F. Hopkins, Eliot Quataert, Norman Murray; The cosmic baryon cycle and galaxy mass assembly in the FIRE simulations, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Volume 470, Issue 4, 1 October 2017, Pages 4698–4719,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:81433
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:14 Sep 2017 18:04
Last Modified:15 Nov 2021 19:43

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