The Gaia Sausage is the major accretion event that built the stellar halo of the Milky Way galaxy. Here, we provide dynamical and chemical evidence for a second substantial accretion episode, distinct from the Gaia Sausage. The Sequoia Event provided the bulk of the high-energy retrograde stars in the stellar halo, as well as the recently discovered globular cluster FSR 1758. There are up to six further globular clusters, including ω Centauri, as well as many of the retrograde substructures in Myeong et al., associated with the progenitor dwarf galaxy, named the Sequoia. The stellar mass in the Sequoia galaxy is ∼5 × 10 M , whilst the total mass is ∼1010 M , as judged from abundance matching or from the total sum of the globular cluster mass. Although clearly less massive than the Sausage, the Sequoia has a distinct chemodynamical signature. The strongly retrograde Sequoia stars have a typical eccentricity of ∼0.6, whereas the Sausage stars have no clear net rotation and move on predominantly radial orbits. On average, the Sequoia stars have lower metallicity by ∼0.3 dex and higher abundance ratios as compared to the Sausage. We conjecture that the Sausage and the Sequoia galaxies may have been associated and accreted at a comparable epoch.

Evidence for two early accretion events that built the Milky Way stellar halo

Iorio G.;
2019

Abstract

The Gaia Sausage is the major accretion event that built the stellar halo of the Milky Way galaxy. Here, we provide dynamical and chemical evidence for a second substantial accretion episode, distinct from the Gaia Sausage. The Sequoia Event provided the bulk of the high-energy retrograde stars in the stellar halo, as well as the recently discovered globular cluster FSR 1758. There are up to six further globular clusters, including ω Centauri, as well as many of the retrograde substructures in Myeong et al., associated with the progenitor dwarf galaxy, named the Sequoia. The stellar mass in the Sequoia galaxy is ∼5 × 10 M , whilst the total mass is ∼1010 M , as judged from abundance matching or from the total sum of the globular cluster mass. Although clearly less massive than the Sausage, the Sequoia has a distinct chemodynamical signature. The strongly retrograde Sequoia stars have a typical eccentricity of ∼0.6, whereas the Sausage stars have no clear net rotation and move on predominantly radial orbits. On average, the Sequoia stars have lower metallicity by ∼0.3 dex and higher abundance ratios as compared to the Sausage. We conjecture that the Sausage and the Sequoia galaxies may have been associated and accreted at a comparable epoch.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3415111
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