Constraints on the structure of dark matter halos from the rotation curves of low surface brightness galaxies

Frank C. Van Den Bosch, Brant E Robertson, Julianne J. Dalcanton, W. J G De Blok

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

187 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We reexamine the disk-halo decompositions of the rotation curves of low surface brightness (LSB) galaxies with Vmax ≥ 80 km s-1, taking full account of the effects of beam smearing. We show that the spatial resolution of the data is not sufficient to put any meaningful constraints on the density profiles of the dark halos, or on cosmological parameters. This is in strong contrast to claims made in the literature that these LSB rotation curves are only consistent with dark matter halos with shallow central cusps, and it has important implications regarding the halos of LSB galaxies, such as the self-similarity of their rotation curves, and their inconsistency with certain cosmological models or with cold dark matter altogether. Only in one case are the data of sufficient spatial resolution to obtain reliable constraints on the slope of the central density distribution of the dark matter halo. For this single case, we find a central cusp p ∝ r with 0.55 < α < 1.26 at the 99.73% confidence level. This contrasts strongly with the results for two dwarf galaxies (Vmax < 70 km s-1) that we analyze, which yield α < 0.5 at the same level of confidence. This possibly suggests that halos with constant-density cores are restricted to low-mass systems. We show that violent outflows of baryonic matter by supernova feedback can reproduce this mass dependence of halo cusp slopes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1579-1591
Number of pages13
JournalAstronomical Journal
Volume119
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2000
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

halos
dark matter
brightness
galaxies
curves
cusps
spatial resolution
confidence
outflow
slopes
decomposition
dwarf galaxies
supernovae
density distribution
profiles

Keywords

  • Dark matter
  • Galaxies: fundamental parameters
  • Galaxies: halos
  • Galaxies: kinematics and dynamics
  • Galaxies: spiral
  • Galaxies: structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics

Cite this

Constraints on the structure of dark matter halos from the rotation curves of low surface brightness galaxies. / Van Den Bosch, Frank C.; Robertson, Brant E; Dalcanton, Julianne J.; De Blok, W. J G.

In: Astronomical Journal, Vol. 119, No. 4, 04.2000, p. 1579-1591.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Van Den Bosch, Frank C. ; Robertson, Brant E ; Dalcanton, Julianne J. ; De Blok, W. J G. / Constraints on the structure of dark matter halos from the rotation curves of low surface brightness galaxies. In: Astronomical Journal. 2000 ; Vol. 119, No. 4. pp. 1579-1591.
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