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Butterfly in a Cocoon, Understanding the Origin and Morphology of Globular Cluster Streams: The Case of GD-1

Abstract : Tidally disrupted globular cluster streams are usually observed, and therefore perceived, as narrow, linear and one-dimensional structures in the 6D phase-space. Here we show that the GD-1 stellar stream (≈ 30 pc wide), which is the tidal debris of a disrupted globular cluster, possesses a secondary diffuse and extended stellar component (≈ 100 pc wide) around it, detected at > 5σ confidence level. Similar morphological properties are seen in synthetic streams that are produced from star clusters that are formed within dark matter sub-halos and then accrete onto a massive host galaxy. This lends credence to the idea that the progenitor of the highly retrograde GD-1 stream was originally formed outside of the Milky Way in a now defunct dark satellite galaxy. We deem that in future studies, this newly found cocoon component may serve as a structural hallmark to distinguish between the in-situ and ex-situ (accreted) formed globular cluster streams.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-02400831
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Submitted on : Monday, December 9, 2019 - 4:38:10 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, November 3, 2021 - 6:47:41 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Tuesday, March 10, 2020 - 9:04:40 PM

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Khyati Malhan, Rodrigo Ibata, Raymond Carlberg, Monica Valluri, Katherine Freese. Butterfly in a Cocoon, Understanding the Origin and Morphology of Globular Cluster Streams: The Case of GD-1. The Astrophysical Journal, American Astronomical Society, 2019, 881 (2), pp.106. ⟨10.3847/1538-4357/ab2e07⟩. ⟨hal-02400831⟩

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