Structure, Kinematics, and Observability of the Large Magellanic Cloud’s Dynamical Friction Wake in Cold versus Fuzzy Dark Matter

Hayden R. Foote, Gurtina Besla, Philip Mocz, Nicolás Garavito-Camargo, Lachlan Lancaster, Martin Sparre, Emily C. Cunningham, Mark Vogelsberger, Facundo A. Gómez, Chervin F.P. Laporte

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations

Abstract

The Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) will induce a dynamical friction (DF) wake on infall to the Milky Way (MW). The MW’s stellar halo will respond to the gravity of the LMC and the dark matter (DM) wake, forming a stellar counterpart to the DM wake. This provides a novel opportunity to constrain the properties of the DM particle. We present a suite of high-resolution, windtunnel-style simulations of the LMC's DF wake that compare the structure, kinematics, and stellar tracer response of the DM wake in cold DM (CDM), with and without self-gravity, versus fuzzy DM (FDM) with m a = 10−23 eV. We conclude that the self-gravity of the DM wake cannot be ignored. Its inclusion raises the wake’s density by ∼10%, and holds the wake together over larger distances (∼50 kpc) than if self-gravity is ignored. The DM wake’s mass is comparable to the LMC’s infall mass, meaning the DM wake is a significant perturber to the dynamics of MW halo tracers. An FDM wake is more granular in structure and is ∼20% dynamically colder than a CDM wake, but with comparable density. The granularity of an FDM wake increases the stars’ kinematic response at the percent level compared to CDM, providing a possible avenue of distinguishing a CDM versus FDM wake. This underscores the need for kinematic measurements of stars in the stellar halo at distances of 70-100 kpc.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number163
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume954
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Structure, Kinematics, and Observability of the Large Magellanic Cloud’s Dynamical Friction Wake in Cold versus Fuzzy Dark Matter'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this