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Radiative Stellar Feedback in Galaxy Formation: Methods and Physics

Hopkins, Philip F. and Grudić, Michael Y. and Wetzel, Andrew R. and Kereš, Dušan and Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André and Ma, Xiangcheng and Murray, Norman and Butcher, Nathan (2020) Radiative Stellar Feedback in Galaxy Formation: Methods and Physics. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 491 (3). pp. 3702-3729. ISSN 0035-8711. doi:10.1093/mnras/stz3129.

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Radiative feedback (RFB) from stars plays a key role in galaxies, but remains poorly understood. We explore this using high-resolution, multifrequency radiation-hydrodynamics (RHD) simulations from the Feedback In Realistic Environments (FIRE) project. We study ultrafaint dwarf through Milky Way mass scales, including H+He photoionization; photoelectric, Lyman Werner, Compton, and dust heating; and single+multiple scattering radiation pressure (RP). We compare distinct numerical algorithms: ray-based LEBRON (exact when optically thin) and moments-based M1 (exact when optically thick). The most important RFB channels on galaxy scales are photoionization heating and single-scattering RP: in all galaxies, most ionizing/far-UV luminosity (∼1/2 of lifetime-integrated bolometric) is absorbed. In dwarfs, the most important effect is photoionization heating from the UV background suppressing accretion. In MW-mass galaxies, metagalactic backgrounds have negligible effects; but local photoionization and single-scattering RP contribute to regulating the galactic star formation efficiency and lowering central densities. Without some RFB (or other ‘rapid’ FB), resolved GMCs convert too-efficiently into stars, making galaxies dominated by hyperdense, bound star clusters. This makes star formation more violent and ‘bursty’ when SNe explode in these hyperclustered objects: thus, including RFB ‘smoothes’ SFHs. These conclusions are robust to RHD methods, but M1 produces somewhat stronger effects. Like in previous FIRE simulations, IR multiple-scattering is rare (negligible in dwarfs, ∼10 per cent of RP in massive galaxies): absorption occurs primarily in ‘normal’ GMCs with A_V ∼ 1.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription Paper
Hopkins, Philip F.0000-0003-3729-1684
Wetzel, Andrew R.0000-0003-0603-8942
Kereš, Dušan0000-0002-1666-7067
Faucher-Giguère, Claude-André0000-0002-4900-6628
Ma, Xiangcheng0000-0001-8091-2349
Additional Information:© 2019 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model ( Accepted 2019 November 4. Received 2019 October 30; in original form 2018 November 26. Published: 12 November 2019. We thank Eliot Quataert, Alexander Richings, and Alexander Gurvich, with whom we have had a number of useful discussions on topics here. Support for PFH and co-authors was provided by an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, NSF Collaborative Research Grant #1715847 and CAREER grant#1455342, and NASA grants NNX15AT06G, JPL 1589742,17-ATP17-0214. AW was supported by NASA, through ATP grant 80NSSC18K1097, and HST grants GO-14734 and AR-15057 from STScI. DK was supported by NSF grant AST-1715101 and the Cottrell Scholar Award from the Research Corporation for Science Advancement. Numerical calculations were run on the Caltech compute cluster ‘Wheeler,’ allocations from XSEDE TG-AST130039 and PRAC NSF.1713353 supported by the NSF, and NASA HEC SMD-16-7592.
Group:TAPIR, Astronomy Department
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Alfred P. Sloan FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Cottrell Scholar of Research CorporationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:stars: formation – galaxies: active – galaxies: evolution – galaxies: formation – cosmology: theory
Issue or Number:3
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20190206-105644699
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Philip F Hopkins, Michael Y Grudić, Andrew Wetzel, Dušan Kereš, Claude-André Faucher-Giguère, Xiangcheng Ma, Norman Murray, Nathan Butcher, Radiative stellar feedback in galaxy formation: Methods and physics, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Volume 491, Issue 3, January 2020, Pages 3702–3729,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:92731
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:07 Feb 2019 15:55
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 03:53

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