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S.J. Berukoff, BMS Hansen (UCLA)
We present the results of three-body and small N-body simulations aimed at understanding stellar dynamics near the Galactic center. Specifically, we attempt to model the formation and duration of observed structures such as the IRS16SW comoving group, the two counter-rotating disks, and the so-called "S-stars", due to the dissolution of star clusters harboring intermediate-mass black holes which inspiral to the Galactic center due to dynamical friction. Three-body simulations are used to better understand the important model parameters, while providing insight into the general, unrestricted elliptic three-body problem in the presence of strong tidal fields. Simulations of inspiralling, small cluster cores highlight the importance of star-star and star-black hole interactions in determining the final stellar distributions once the inspiral is complete. We find that an intermediate-mass black hole provides a necessary and sufficient mechanism for transporting single stars down the potential well. Further, some evidence is developed that other structures can be formed in this manner. However, limitations in the treatment of multiple regularization disallow their accurate modelling in the presence of strong tidal fields.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.