The LMC vs. The Milky Way

Gurtina Besla, Nicolás Garavito-Camargo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent advancements in astrometry and in cosmological models of dark matter halo growth have significantly changed our understanding of the dynamics of the Local Group. The most dramatic changes owe to a new picture of the structure and dynamics of the Milky Way's most massive satellite galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC), which is most likely on its first passage about the Milky Way and ten times larger in mass than previously assumed. The LMC's orbit through the Milky Way's dark matter and stellar halo will leave characteristic signatures in both density and kinematics. Furthermore, the gravitational perturbations produced by both direct tidal forcing from the LMC and the response of the halo to its passage will together cause significant perturbations to the orbits of tracers of the Milky Way's dark matter distribution. We advocate for the use of basis field expansion methods to fully capture and quantify these effects.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)123-127
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the International Astronomical Union
Issue numberS353
StatePublished - 2019


  • (cosmology:) dark matter
  • (galaxies:) Magellanic Clouds
  • Galaxy: halo
  • Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics
  • methods: numerical

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Space and Planetary Science


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