EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 384, Number 3, March IV 2002
Page(s) 772 - 779
Section Extragalactic astronomy
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20020073

A&A 384, 772-779 (2002)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20020073

Dissipationless collapse of spherical protogalaxies and the fundamental plane

C. C. Dantas1, 2, H. V. Capelato1, R. R. de Carvalho3 and A. L. B. Ribeiro4

1  Divisão de Astrofísica, INPE/MCT, CP 515, S. J. dos Campos, SP 12201-970, Brazil
2  Departamento de Astronomia, Instituto Astronômico e Geofísico, Universidade de São Paulo, 01060-970, SP, Brazil
3  Observatório Nacional, Rua Gal. José Cristino, 77 - 20921-400, Rio de Janeiro, RJ., Brazil
4  Departamento de Matemática Aplicada, IMECC, Universidade Estadual de Campinas, 13083-970 SP, Brazil

(Received 28 June 2001 / Accepted 4 December 2001 )

Following on from the numerical work of Capelato et al. (1995, 1997), where dissipationless merger simulations were shown to reproduce the "Fundamental Plane" (FP) of elliptical galaxies, we investigate whether the end products of pure, spherically symmetric, one-component dissipationless collapses could also reproduce the FP. Past numerical work on collisionless collapses have addressed important issues on the dynamical/structural characteristics of collapsed equilibrium systems. However, the study of collisionless collapse in the context of the nature of the FP has not been satisfactorily addressed yet. Our aim in this paper is to focus our attention on the resulting collapse of simple one-component spherical models with a range of different initial virial coefficients. We find that the characteristic correlations of the models are compatible with virialized, centrally homologous systems. Our results strengthen the idea that merging may be a fundamental ingredient in forming non-homologous objects.

Key words: galaxies: elliptical midlenticular, cD -- galaxies: fundamental parameters -- methods: numerical

Offprint request: C. C. Dantas, chris@das.inpe.br

© ESO 2002