Seminar
Spirals and rings: how do they form? What are their structure and properties?

Dr. Lia Athanassoula

Abstract

I will propose a new theory to explain the formation and properties of rings and spirals in barred galaxies, focusing on a comparison of theoretical results to observations and giving some predictions for further comparisons. This theory can account for both spirals and rings, the latter both inner and outer. The model outer rings have the observed R1, R_1', R_2, R_2' and R_1R_2 morphologies, including the dimples near the direction of the bar major axis. It explains why the vast majority of spirals in barred galaxies are two armed and trailing and I will discuss what it takes for higher multiplicity arms to form. The shapes of observed and theoretical spirals agree and the theory predicts that stronger non-axisymmetric forcings at and somewhat beyond corotation will drive more open spirals. I will compare the ratio of ring diameters in theory and in observations and predict that more elliptical rings will correspond to stronger forcings. This theory also provides the right building blocks for the rectangular-like bar outline and for ansae.

About the talk

Spirals and rings: how do they form? What are their structure and properties?
Dr. Lia Athanassoula
Laboratoire d'Astrophysique de Marseille, France
Tuesday March 24, 2009 - 0:00  (Aula)
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