Dynamical models with a general anisotropy profile*
Sterrenkundig Observatorium, Universiteit Gent, Krijgslaan 281 S9, 9000 Gent, Belgium e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 28 May 2007
Aims.Both numerical simulations and observational evidence indicate that the outer regions of galaxies and dark matter haloes are typically mildly to significantly radially anisotropic. The inner regions can be significantly non-isotropic, depending on the dynamical formation and evolution processes. In an attempt to break the lack of simple dynamical models that can reproduce this behaviour, we explore a technique to construct dynamical models with an arbitrary density and an arbitrary anisotropy profile.
Methods.We outline a general construction method and propose a more practical approach based on a parameterized anisotropy profile. This approach consists of fitting the density of the model with a set of dynamical components, each of which have the same anisotropy profile. Using this approach we avoid the delicate fine-tuning difficulties other fitting techniques typically encounter when constructing radially anisotropic models.
Results.We present a model anisotropy profile that generalizes the Osipkov-Merritt profile, and that can represent any smooth monotonic anisotropy profile. Based on this model anisotropy profile, we construct a very general seven-parameter set of dynamical components for which the most important dynamical properties can be calculated analytically. We use the results to look for simple one-component dynamical models that generate simple potential-density pairs while still supporting a flexible anisotropy profile. We present families of Plummer and Hernquist models in which the anisotropy at small and large radii can be chosen as free parameters. We also generalize these two families to a three-parameter family that self-consistently generates the set of Veltmann potential-density pairs. These new analytical models are an important step forward compared to isotropic or Osipkov-Merritt models and can be used to generate the initial conditions for realistic simulations of galaxies or dark matter haloes.
Key words: Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics / cosmology: dark matter / methods: analytical
© ESO, 2007