EDP Sciences
Free Access
Volume 392, Number 1, September II 2002
Page(s) 83 - 102
Section Extragalactic astronomy
DOI https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20020920
Published online 22 August 2002

A&A 392, 83-102 (2002)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20020920

Gas accretion on spiral galaxies: Bar formation and renewal

F. Bournaud1 and F. Combes2

1  École Normale Supérieure, 45 rue d'Ulm, 75005 Paris, France
2  Observatoire de Paris, DEMIRM, 61 Av. de l'Observatoire, 75014 Paris, France

(Received 14 January (2002) / Accepted 17 June (2002) )

The effects of gas accretion on spiral disk dynamics and stability are studied through N-body simulations, including star formation and gas/stars mass exchange. The detailed processes of bar formation, bar destruction and bar re-formation are followed, while in the same time the disk to bulge ratio is varying. The accreted gas might be first prevented to flow inwards to the center by the bar gravity torques, which maintains it to the outer Lindblad resonance. While the first bar is weakening, the accreted gas replenishes the disk, increasing the disk-to-bulge ratio, and the disk self-gravity. A second bar is then unstable, with a higher pattern speed, due both to the increased mass, and shorter bar length. Three or four bar episodes have been followed over a Hubble time. Their strength is decreasing with time, while their pattern speed is increasing. Detailed balance of the angular momentum transfer and evolution can account for these processes. The gas recycled through star formation, and rejected through stellar mass loss plays also a role in the disk dynamics. Implications on the spiral galaxy dynamics and evolution along the Hubble sequence, and as a function of redshift are discussed.

Key words: galaxies: evolution -- galaxies: spiral -- methods: N-body simulations

Offprint request: F. Bournaud, bournaud@clipper.ens.fr

© ESO 2002

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