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The RAVE survey: constraining the local Galactic escape speed

Smith, Martin C; Ruchti, Gregory R; Helmi, Amina; Wyse, Rosemary F G; Fulbright, J.P.; Freeman, Kenneth; Navarro, J F; Seabroke, G M; Steinmetz, Matthias; Williams, Mary; Bienayme, O; Binney, J; Bland-Hawthorn, Joss; Dehnen, W; Gibson, Bradley K; Gilmore, Gerard; Grebel, E K; Munari, U; Parker, Quentin A; Scholz, R-D; Siebert, A; Watson, Fred G; Zwitter, T

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We report new constraints on the local escape speed of our Galaxy. Our analysis is based on a sample of high-velocity stars from the RAVE survey and two previously published data sets. We use cosmological simulations of disc galaxy formation to motivate our assumptions on the shape of the velocity distribution, allowing for a significantly more precise measurement of the escape velocity compared to previous studies. We find that the escape velocity lies within the range 498 < vesc < 608 km s-1...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorSmith, Martin C
dc.contributor.authorRuchti, Gregory R
dc.contributor.authorHelmi, Amina
dc.contributor.authorWyse, Rosemary F G
dc.contributor.authorFulbright, J.P.
dc.contributor.authorFreeman, Kenneth
dc.contributor.authorNavarro, J F
dc.contributor.authorSeabroke, G M
dc.contributor.authorSteinmetz, Matthias
dc.contributor.authorWilliams, Mary
dc.contributor.authorBienayme, O
dc.contributor.authorBinney, J
dc.contributor.authorBland-Hawthorn, Joss
dc.contributor.authorDehnen, W
dc.contributor.authorGibson, Bradley K
dc.contributor.authorGilmore, Gerard
dc.contributor.authorGrebel, E K
dc.contributor.authorMunari, U
dc.contributor.authorParker, Quentin A
dc.contributor.authorScholz, R-D
dc.contributor.authorSiebert, A
dc.contributor.authorWatson, Fred G
dc.contributor.authorZwitter, T
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-07T22:19:41Z
dc.identifier.issn0035-8711
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/19460
dc.description.abstractWe report new constraints on the local escape speed of our Galaxy. Our analysis is based on a sample of high-velocity stars from the RAVE survey and two previously published data sets. We use cosmological simulations of disc galaxy formation to motivate our assumptions on the shape of the velocity distribution, allowing for a significantly more precise measurement of the escape velocity compared to previous studies. We find that the escape velocity lies within the range 498 < vesc < 608 km s-1 (90 per cent confidence), with a median likelihood of 544 km s-1. The fact that v2esc is significantly greater than 2v2circ (where vcirc = 220 km s-1 is the local circular velocity) implies that there must be a significant amount of mass exterior to the solar circle, that is, this convincingly demonstrates the presence of a dark halo in the Galaxy. We use our constraints on vesc to determine the mass of the Milky Way halo for three halo profiles. For example, an adiabatically contracted NFW halo model results in a virial mass of 1.42+1.14-0.54 × 1012 M⊙ and virial radius of (90 per cent confidence). For this model the circular velocity at the virial radius is 142+31-21 km s-1. Although our halo masses are model dependent, we find that they are in good agreement with each other.
dc.publisherBlackwell Publishing Ltd
dc.sourceMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
dc.subjectKeywords: Galaxy: fundamental parameters; Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics
dc.titleThe RAVE survey: constraining the local Galactic escape speed
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume379
dc.date.issued2007
local.identifier.absfor020110 - Stellar Astronomy and Planetary Systems
local.identifier.ariespublicationu4362859xPUB8
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationSmith, Martin C, University of Groningen Kapteyn Astronomical Institute
local.contributor.affiliationRuchti, Gregory R, Johns Hopkins University
local.contributor.affiliationHelmi, Amina, University of Groningen
local.contributor.affiliationWyse, Rosemary F G, Johns Hopkins University
local.contributor.affiliationFulbright, J.P., Johns Hopkins University
local.contributor.affiliationFreeman, Kenneth, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationNavarro, J F, University of Victoria
local.contributor.affiliationSeabroke, G M, University of Cambridge
local.contributor.affiliationSteinmetz, Matthias, Astrophysical Institute Potsdam
local.contributor.affiliationWilliams, Mary, College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationBienayme, O, Observatoire de Strasbourg
local.contributor.affiliationBinney, J, University of Oxford
local.contributor.affiliationBland-Hawthorn, Joss, Anglo-Australian Observatory
local.contributor.affiliationDehnen, W, University of Leicester
local.contributor.affiliationGibson, Bradley K, University of Central Lancashire
local.contributor.affiliationGilmore, Gerard, University of Cambridge
local.contributor.affiliationGrebel, E K, Universitat Basel
local.contributor.affiliationMunari, U, INAF-Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova
local.contributor.affiliationParker, Quentin A, Macquarie University
local.contributor.affiliationScholz, R-D, Astrophysical Institute Potsdam
local.contributor.affiliationSiebert, A, Astrophysical Institute Potsdam
local.contributor.affiliationWatson, Fred G, Anglo-Australian Observatory
local.contributor.affiliationZwitter, T, University of Ljubljana
local.description.embargo2037-12-31
local.bibliographicCitation.issue2
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage755
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage772
local.identifier.doi10.1111/j.1365-2966.2007.11964.x
dc.date.updated2015-12-07T08:39:27Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-34547427508
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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