Ryan Tanner, Gerald Cecil, Fabian Heitsch

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Our three-dimensional hydrodynamical simulations of starbursts examine the formation of superbubbles over a range of driving luminosities and mass loadings that determine superbubble growth and wind velocity. From this we determine the relationship between the velocity of a galactic wind (GW) and the power of the starburst. We find a threshold for the formation of a wind, above which the speed of the wind is not affected by grid resolution or the temperature floor of our radiative cooling. We investigate the effect that two different temperature floors in our radiative cooling prescription have on wind kinematics and content. We find that cooling to 10 K instead of to 104 K increases the mass fraction of cold neutral and hot X-ray gas in the GW, while halving that in warm Hα. Our simulations show that the mass of cold gas transported into the lower halo does not depend on the starburst strength. Optically bright filaments form at the edge of merging superbubbles, or where a cold dense cloud has been disrupted by the wind. Filaments formed by merging superbubbles will persist and grow to >400 pc in length if anchored to a star forming complex. Filaments embedded in the hot GW contain warm and cold gas that moves 300-1200 km s-1 slower than the surrounding wind, with the coldest gas hardly moving with respect to the Galaxy. Warm and cold matter in the GW show asymmetric absorption profiles consistent with observations, with a thin tail up to the wind velocity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number7
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Apr 10 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • ISM: bubbles
  • ISM: jets and outflows
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: nuclei
  • galaxies: starburst
  • hydrodynamics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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