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The Top 12 of 2012

6. Dark Matter Haloes: Now, Theoretically More Concentrated!

Why it is important: The universe underwent major changes to get from a few fluctuations in the CMB to the structure of galaxy clusters and dark matter filaments we observe today. Studying how the structure of dark matter haloes evolved with redshift is one way to figure out how these changes happened.

This paper presents new models of dark matter halo structure that are a significantly better match to observations (such as those described in #8). On the y-axis, the concentration of dark matter haloes (how much of their mass is squeezed into the center of the halo relative to the outskirts) are compared to the mass of the halo within the virial radius on the x-axis. The models presented in this paper (solid line) no longer underpredict observed halo concentrations (error bars), as was the case for previous models (dotted line). (Figure 13 of Prada et al.)

Next: (#5) The Satellites Are Still Missing… Where are the Milky Way’s Predicted Massive Dwarf Galaxies?

Previous: (#7) Putting a New Spin on Stellar Models: A New Treatment of Mass Loss and Rotation for Stellar Evolution

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I am a 22nd-grader at UCLA, working with Mark Morris and spending the year at the MPIA in Heidelberg finishing my thesis. I like molecules in space, radio telescopes, the extreme center of our galaxy, getting to look at things no-one else has ever seen before, solving puzzles, and finding creative ways to survive graduate school

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6 Responses to “The Top 12 of 2012”

  1. Hi Betsy:

    Just a note– it looks like the arXiv link that you have on the first page of this article does not link to the title you provide.

    The link looks like it goes here:


    “How supernova feedback turns dark matter cusps into cores”

    instead of here:


    “Keck Spectroscopy of Faint 3<z<8 Lyman Break Galaxies:- Evidence for a Declining Fraction of Emission Line Sources In the Redshift Range 6<z<8"


    Posted by Dave Coulter | February 20, 2013, 5:14 pm
  2. Fascinating articles! But counting citations seriously distorts what astronomy is about. Because most young astronomers today work in observational cosmology, 10/12 papers are on that topic, the most glamorous frontier. But 10/12 of the most significant new papers of 2012 (selected some other way) paint a certainly much broader canvas, and reflect the amazing scope of astronomical research!
    Only the search for new planets (another glamour topic) and new calculations of the evolution of rotating stars in the HR diagram (a classic issue in stellar astronomy) penetrated the top twelve. So much more was missing!
    Nonetheless, an interesting citation poll.

    Posted by Donald D Clayton | February 20, 2013, 7:39 pm
  3. Hi, I think the mass-to-light ratio of a low-mass star is higher than that of a high-mass star. In addition, the Salpeter IMF has more low-mass stars than the Kroupa and Chabrier IMFs.

    I think that the article in astrobites has more detail introduction:

    Posted by Song, Wang | February 20, 2013, 9:05 pm

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