EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 437, Number 1, July I 2005
Page(s) 69 - 85
Section Extragalactic astronomy
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20042036

A&A 437, 69-85 (2005)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20042036

Galaxy mergers with various mass ratios: Properties of remnants

F. Bournaud1, C. J. Jog2 and F. Combes1

1  Observatoire de Paris, LERMA, 61 Av. de l'Observatoire, 75014, Paris, France
    e-mail: Frederic.Bournaud@obspm.fr
2  Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560012, India

(Received 21 September 2004 / Accepted 7 March 2005 )

We study galaxy mergers with various mass ratios using N-body simulations, with an emphasis on the unequal-mass mergers in the relatively unexplored range of mass-ratios 4:1-10:1. Our recent work (Bournaud et al. 2004) shows that the above range of mass ratio results in hybrid systems with spiral-like luminosity profiles but with elliptical-like kinematics, as observed in the data analysis for a sample of mergers by Jog & Chitre 2002). In this paper, we study the merger remnants for mass ratios from 1:1 to 10:1 while systematically covering the parameter space. We obtain the morphological and kinematical properties of the remnants, and also discuss the robustness and the visibility of disks in the merger remnants with a random line-of-sight. We show that the mass ratios 1:1-3:1 give rise to elliptical remnants whereas the mass ratios 4.5:1-10:1 produce hybrid systems with mixed properties. We find that the transition between disk-like and elliptical remnants occurs between a narrow mass range of 4.5:1-3:1. The unequal-mass mergers are more likely to occur than the standard equal-mass mergers studied in the literature so far, and we discuss their implications for the evolution of galaxies.

Key words: galaxies: evolution -- galaxies: kinematics and dynamics -- galaxies: formation -- galaxies: interactions -- galaxies: structure

SIMBAD Objects in preparation

© ESO 2005

What is OpenURL?

The OpenURL standard is a protocol for transmission of metadata describing the resource that you wish to access.

An OpenURL link contains article metadata and directs it to the OpenURL server of your choice. The OpenURL server can provide access to the resource and also offer complementary services (specific search engine, export of references...). The OpenURL link can be generated by different means.

  • If your librarian has set up your subscription with an OpenURL resolver, OpenURL links appear automatically on the abstract pages.
  • You can define your own OpenURL resolver with your EDPS Account.
    In this case your choice will be given priority over that of your library.
  • You can use an add-on for your browser (Firefox or I.E.) to display OpenURL links on a page (see http://www.openly.com/openurlref/). You should disable this module if you wish to use the OpenURL server that you or your library have defined.