Signatures of galaxy mergers in the Milky Way: Here, there and everywhere

Author: Helmi, A.

Source: Astrophysics and Space Science, Volume 281, Numbers 1-2, July 2002 , pp. 351-354(4)

Publisher: Springer

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The hierarchical paradigm predicts that large galaxies like the Milky Way formed through mergers of smaller systems, which are expected to leave behind substructures in the halo of the final product. Recently the first tests of this prediction on galaxies other than the Milky Way have been made (eg NGC 5907 by Sackett et al.; M31 by Ibata et al.), but one should bare in mind that it is extremely difficult to detect halos in external galaxies let alone substructures in those halos. On the other hand, the multi-dimensional phase-space information available for our Galaxy (6d for stars in the vicinity of the Sun, and 4d for more distant ones) enables us to directly search for merger signatures.

Document Type: Research Article


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Publication date: July 1, 2002

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