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The cold mode: a phenomenological model for the evolution of density perturbations in the intracluster medium

Singh, Ashmeet and Sharma, Prateek (2015) The cold mode: a phenomenological model for the evolution of density perturbations in the intracluster medium. In: MONTHLY NOTICES OF THE ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY, 446 (2). pp. 1895-1906.

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/mnras/stu2264

Abstract

Cool cluster cores are in global thermal equilibrium but are locally thermally unstable. We study a non-linear phenomenological model for the evolution of density perturbations in the intracluster medium (ICM) due to local thermal instability and gravity. We have analysed and extended a model for the evolution of an overdense blob in the ICM. We find two regimes in which the overdense blobs can cool to thermally stable low temperatures. One for large t(cool)/t(ff) (t(cool) is the cooling time and t(ff) is the free-fall time), where a large initial overdensity is required for thermal runaway to occur; this is the regime which was previously analysed in detail. We discover a second regime for t(cool)/t(ff) less than or similar to 1 (in agreement with Cartesian simulations of local thermal instability in an external gravitational field), where runaway cooling happens for arbitrarily small amplitudes. Numerical simulations have shown that cold gas condenses out more easily in a spherical geometry. We extend the analysis to include geometrical compression in weakly stratified atmospheres such as the ICM. With a single parameter, analogous to the mixing length, we are able to reproduce the results from numerical simulations; namely, small density perturbations lead to the condensation of extended cold filaments only if t(cool)/t(ff) less than or similar to 10.

Item Type: Journal Article
Additional Information: Copy right for this article belongs to the OXFORD UNIV PRESS, GREAT CLARENDON ST, OXFORD OX2 6DP, ENGLAND
Keywords: hydrodynamics; instabilities; galaxies: clusters: intracluster medium; galaxies: haloes
Department/Centre: Division of Physical & Mathematical Sciences > Joint Astronomy Programme
Division of Physical & Mathematical Sciences > Physics
Depositing User: Id for Latest eprints
Date Deposited: 20 Apr 2015 07:34
Last Modified: 20 Apr 2015 07:34
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/51258

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