HEAD Division Meeting 1999, April 1999
Session 4. Clusters of Galaxies
Poster, Monday, April 12, 1999, 8:30am-6:10pm, Gold Room

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[4.10] A Multiphase Model for the Intracluster Medium

D. Nagai (Physics Department, University of Michigan), M.E. Sulkanen (NASA-MSFC), A.E. Evrard (Physics Department, University of Michigan)

Constraints on the clustered mass density \Omegam of the universe derived from the observed population mean intracluster gas fraction \langle fICM \rangle of x-ray clusters may be biased by reliance on a single-phase assumption for the thermodynamic structure of the intracluster medium (ICM). We propose a descriptive model for multiphase structure in which a spherically symmetric ICM contains isobaric density perturbations with a radially dependent variance \sigma2(r) = \sigmac2 (1+r2/rc2)-\epsilon. The model extends the work of Gunn & Thomas (1996) which assumed constant (radially independent) density fluctuations thoughout the ICM.

Fixing the x-ray emission and emission weighted temperature, we explore two independently observable signatures of the model in the {\sigmac,\epsilon} space. For bremsstrahlung dominated emission, the central Sunyaev-Zel'dovich (SZ) decrement in the multiphase case is increased over the single-phase case and multiphase x-ray spectra in the range 0.1-20 keV are flatter in the continuum and exhibit stronger low energy emission lines than their single-phase counterpart. We quantify these effects for a fiducial 108 K cluster and demonstrate how the combination of SZ and x-ray spectroscopy can be used to identify a preferred location {\hat{\sigma}c,\hat{\epsilon}} in the model space. From these parameters, the correct value of \langle fICM \rangle in the multiphase model results, allowing an unbiased estimate of \Omegam to be recovered.


If the author provided an email address or URL for general inquiries, it is as follows:

msulkanen@astro.lsa.umich.edu


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