Chemodynamics of a simulated disc galaxy: initial mass functions and Type Ia supernova progenitors

Few, C. G., Courty, S., Gibson, Bradley Kenneth orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-4446-3130, Michel-Dansac, L. and Calura, F. (2014) Chemodynamics of a simulated disc galaxy: initial mass functions and Type Ia supernova progenitors. Monthly Notices Of The Royal Astronomical Society, 444 (4). pp. 3845-3862. ISSN 0035-8711

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We trace the formation and advection of several elements within a cosmological adaptive mesh refinement simulation of an L� galaxy. We use nine realizations of the same initial conditions with different stellar initial mass functions (IMFs), mass limits for Type II and Type Ia supernovae (SNII, SNIa) and stellar lifetimes to constrain these subgrid phenomena. Our code includes self-gravity, hydrodynamics, star formation, radiative cooling and feedback from multiple sources within a cosmological framework. Under our assumptions of nucleosynthesis we find that SNII with progenitor masses of up to 100 M� are required to match low-metallicity gas oxygen abundances. Tardy SNIa are necessary to reproduce the classical chemical evolution ‘knee’ in [O/Fe]–[Fe/H]: more prompt SNIa delayed time distributions do not reproduce this feature. Within our framework of hydrodynamical mixing of metals and galaxy mergers we find that chemical evolution is sensitive to the shape of the IMF and that there exists a degeneracy with the mass range of SNII. We look at the abundance plane and present the properties of different regions of the plot, noting the distinct chemical properties of satellites and a series of nested discs that have greater velocity dispersions are more α-rich and metal poor with age.

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