Dynamical evolution of globular clusters in dark matter halos

Philip Breen, Anna Lisa Varri, Jorge Penarrubia, Douglas C. Heggie

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

The formation of globular clusters in a cosmological context is a topical open problem. One possible formation scenario is that globular clusters have formed in their own dark matter halos, and, as a result, some clusters may have retained it to the present day. In such a case, collisional processes taking place in the central regions of globulars may lead to the formation of a tenuous stellar envelope extending far beyond the tidal boundary of the parent cluster.The synergy between the astrometric mission Gaia and forthcoming multi-object spectrographs such as WEAVE will allow us to explore, with unprecedented accuracy, the outer regions of selected Galactic globular clusters, therefore it is particularly timely to consider to what extent the presence of dark matter is consistent with their dynamics and structure at large distances from the cluster centre.Driven by these motivations, we present the results of a series of direct N-body simulations where globular clusters have been evolved self-consistently in a static dark matter potential. Special attention will be given to the exploration of the effects of the dark halo on the traditional phases of the long-term evolution of collisional systems and the dynamical interplay with other fundamental physical ingredients, such as stellar-mass black holes, will be discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2017


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