The dust-to-gas and dust-to-metal ratio in galaxies from z = 0 to 6

Qi Li, Desika Narayanan, Romeel Davé

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

105 Scopus citations


We present predictions for the evolution of the galaxy dust-to-gas ratio (DGR) and dust-to-metal ratio (DTM) from z = 0 → 6, using a model for the production, growth, and destruction of dust grains implemented into the SIMBA cosmological hydrodynamic galaxy formation simulation. In our model, dust forms in stellar ejecta, grows by the accretion of metals, and is destroyed by thermal sputtering and supernovae. Our simulation reproduces the observed dust mass function at z = 0, but modestly underpredicts the mass function by ∼×3 at z ∼ 1–2. The z = 0 DGR versus metallicity relationship shows a tight positive correlation for star-forming galaxies, while it is uncorrelated for quenched systems. There is little evolution in the DGR–metallicity relationship between z = 0 and 6. We use machine learning techniques to search for the galaxy physical properties that best correlate with the DGR and DTM. We find that the DGR is primarily correlated with the gas-phase metallicity, though correlations with the depletion time-scale, stellar mass, and gas fraction are non-negligible. We provide a crude fitting relationship for DGR and DTM versus the gas-phase metallicity, along with a public code package that estimates the DGR and DTM given a set of galaxy physical properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1425-1436
Number of pages12
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 21 2019


  • (ISM:) dust extinction
  • Galaxies: ISM
  • Galaxies: high-redshift

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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