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Andreea Font (Astrophysics Research Institute, LJMU)

Towards an understanding of the formation of the Milky Way. What have we learned from cosmological simulations and observations?
When Dec 15, 2021
from 03:45 PM to 04:00 PM
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Over the past few years, great advances have been made in our understanding of the formation of Milky Way, thanks to a wealth of data from Gaia and numerous other galactic surveys. Whilst being able to reconstruct the past assembly events of our Galaxy, we also want to understand how this assembly history fits within the wider picture of galaxy formation. For example, is the formation history of the Milky Way typical for a galaxy of its mass?
I will address this question with a new suite of zoomed cosmological hydrodynamical simulations, called ARTEMIS, which follow the formation of 45 Milky Way-mass galaxies in a Lambda CDM cosmology. This sample of simulated 'Milky Way analogues', each with its own formation history, allows us to put the formation of our own Galaxy in the proper cosmological context. I will discuss the properties of these simulated Milky Way-type galaxies and of their surviving satellite galaxies, comparing those with observed properties in various Milky Way analogues. I will show that, after accounting for the specifics of observational surveys, the properties of our Milky Way and its dwarf satellite galaxies fit comfortably well with the mean trends and scatter expected in a Lambda CDM cosmology.