A strong correlation has been measured between the observed centripetal accelerations in galaxies and the accelerations implied by the baryonic components of galaxies. This empirical radial acceleration relation must be accounted for in any viable model of galaxy formation. We measure and compare the radial accelerations contributed by baryons and by dark matter in disk galaxies in the MassiveBlack-II hydrodynamic galaxy formation simulation. The sample of 1594 galaxies spans three orders of magnitude in luminosity and four in surface brightness, comparable to the observed sample from the Spitzer Photometry & Accurate Rotation Curves (SPARC) dataset used by McGaugh et al. (2016). We find that radial accelerations contributed by baryonic matter only and by total matter are highly correlated, with only small scatter around their mean or median relation, despite the wide ranges of galaxy luminosity and surface brightness. We further find that the radial acceleration relation in this simulation differs from that of the SPARC sample, and can be described by a simple power law in the acceleration range we are probing.
A. Tenneti, Y. Mao, R. Croft, et. al.
Thu, 16 Mar 17
Comments: 7 pages, 4 figures