Problems of collisional stellar dynamics

D. C. Heggie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The discovery of dynamical friction was Chandrasekhar's best known contribution to the theory of stellar dynamics, but his work ranged from the few-body problem to the limit of large N (in effect, galaxies). Much of this work was summarised in the text "Principles of Stellar Dynamics" (Chandrasekhar 1942, 1960), which ranges from a precise calculation of the time of relaxation, through a long analysis of galaxy models, to the behaviour of star clusters in tidal fields. The later edition also includes the work on dynamical friction and related issues. In this review we focus on progress in the collisional aspects of these problems, i.e. those where few-body interactions play a dominant role, and so we omit further discussion of galaxy dynamics. 2 But we try to link Chandrasekhar's fundamental discoveries in collisional problems with the progress that has been made in the 50 years since the publication of the enlarged edition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-85
Number of pages17
JournalBulletin of the astronomical society of india
Volume39
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2011

Keywords

  • binaries: general
  • galaxies: kinematics and dynamics
  • globular clusters: general
  • open clusters and associations: general
  • RANDOM GRAVITATIONAL ENCOUNTERS
  • MONTE-CARLO SIMULATIONS
  • SINGLE-STAR SCATTERING
  • BLACK-HOLE BINARIES
  • DISRUPTION TIME-SCALES
  • EXTERNAL TIDAL FIELD
  • GLOBULAR-CLUSTER M4
  • LONG-TERM EVOLUTION
  • MASS-LOSS TIMESCALE
  • N-BODY SYSTEMS

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