The dynamical fingerprint of gas-expulsion: Insights into the assembly of the Milky Ways’ old GC system
1 Argelander-Institut für Astronomie, Universität Bonn, Auf dem Hügel 71, 53121 Bonn, Germany
2 Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie, Auf dem Hügel 69, 53121 Bonn, Germany
a Member of the International Max Planck Research School (IMPRS) for Astronomy and Astrophysics at the Universities of Bonn and Cologne, e-mail: e-mail: email@example.com
Since the oldest globular clusters (GCs) are early residuals from the formation of the Milky Way (MW), GCs were exposed to the likely evolving potential of our Galaxy. The expulsion of the residual-gas from the GC’s embedded progenitors is sensitive to the conditions in the pre-MW gas cloud. By means of N-body computations it is shown that gas throw-out from initially mass-segregated GCs affect the shape of the low-mass stellar mass function (MF) and that its imprint might still be visible in the present-day MF (PDMF). The strength of the tidal-field at birth influences the degree of gas-expulsion driven low-mass-star depletion and therefore the PDMF probes the MW potential at the time of GC formation. It is argued that among the old GC population in the MW, younger GCs show stronger low-mass-star loss than older GCs. This is shown to be consistent with a contracting and self-gravitating cloud in which fluctuations in the pre-MW potential grow with time. An initially relatively smooth tidal field evolved into a grainy potential within a dynamical time-scale of the collapsing cloud (based on ).
© Owned by the authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2012