Dr. Matt Bellardini is our group’s third graduating PhD student! He completed his PhD dissertation on Chemical Evolution Across Cosmic Time: Stellar Elemental Abundance Patterns and Radial Redistribution in Cosmological Simulations. Matt is searching for industry jobs in the Seattle area. Congratulations Dr. Bellardini!
Sky & Telescope has highlighted our research, which PhD student Jenna Samuel led, to understand the origin of the thin plane of satellite galaxies around the Milky Way, including the likely important role that the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) has played in causing this planar structure.
Excited to announce the first student-led paper from our group, led by PhD student Jenna Samuel: A profile in FIRE: resolving the radial distributions of satellite dwarf galaxies in the Local Group with simulations. Jenna examined the radial distribution of satellite galaxies around MW/M31-mass hosts in our FIRE simulations, which she showed are consistent with the Local Group. The satellites of MW-like galaxies from the SAGA survey have 2D radial profiles that are similar to our simulations too. Interestingly, more massive host galaxies have fewer satellites at small distances, which is caused by tidal destruction from the central galaxy. Jenna also quantified the destruction of subhalos by comparing our baryonic simulations to their dark matter-only versions, finding 10x destruction within the inner 20 kpc. Finally, Jenna applied approximations of observational completeness in the LG to our simulations, predicting that there may be 2-10 satellites with stellar mass > 10^5 Msun to be discovered around the MW, and 6-9 around M31. Congratulations to Jenna for such a good first paper!