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Biffi, V.; Planelles, S.; Borgani, S.; Fabjan, D.; Rasia, E.; Murante, G.; Tornatore, L.; Dolag, Klaus; Granato, G. L.; Gaspari, M.; Beck, Alexander M. (2017): The history of chemical enrichment in the intracluster medium from cosmological simulations. In: Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Vol. 468, No. 1: pp. 531-548
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The distribution of metals in the intracluster medium (ICM) of galaxy clusters provides valuable information on their formation and evolution, on the connection with the cosmic star formation and on the effects of different gas processes. By analysing a sample of simulated galaxy clusters, we study the chemical enrichment of the ICM, its evolution, and its relation with the physical processes included in the simulation and with the thermal properties of the core. These simulations, consisting of re-simulations of 29 Lagrangian regions performed with an upgraded version of the smoothed particle hydrodynamics (SPH) GADGET-3 code, have been run including two different sets of baryonic physics: one accounts for radiative cooling, star formation, metal enrichment and supernova (SN) feedback, and the other one further includes the effects of feedback from active galactic nuclei (AGN). In agreement with observations, we find an anti-correlation between entropy and metallicity in cluster cores, and similar radial distributions of heavy-element abundances and abundance ratios out to large clustercentric distances (similar to R-180). In the outskirts, namely outside of similar to 0.2 R-180, we find a remarkably homogeneous metallicity distribution, with almost flat profiles of the elements produced by either SNIa or SNII. We investigated the origin of this phenomenon and discovered that it is due to the widespread displacement of metal-rich gas by early (z > 2-3) AGN powerful bursts, acting on small high-redshift haloes. Our results also indicate that the intrinsic metallicity of the hot gas for this sample is on average consistent with no evolution between z = 2 and z = 0, across the entire radial range.