There have been several attempts to model the ``Antennae'' in the
literature. I will, however, concentrate this discussion on Toomre and
Toomre's 1972 paper, Galactic Bridges and Tails and Barnes'
1988 paper, Encounters of Disk/Halo Galaxies.
Toomre and Toomre's 1972 paper is seen by many as the seminal work in this field, triggering a paradigm shift and establishing mergers and tidal interactions as respectable subjects for theoretical inquiry. Although there were several papers in the literature dealing with interacting galaxies at that time and despite the fact that their modeling of galaxies as central masses surrounded by disks of test particles was hardly novel, there were many virtues to the Toomres' work:
Barnes' paper, published 16 years after the Toomres' attempt, was the
first to model interacting galaxies as fully 3 dimensional N-Body
entities whose equations of motion were integrated in a self
consistent manner. An important and telling addition to the
simulation's armory was the presence of a massive dark halo; this
would have an important effect on the evolution of the merger.
At the end of the main discussion, I will briefly review the work of Mihos, Richstone and Bothun and discuss the importance of model matching, as well as some of the observations that must be satisfied if the models are to be considered successful reconstructions.
|N-Body Simulations of the Antennae|