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Journal Paper

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Leavers and remainers: galaxies split by group-exit SCI
  • Nelvy Choque-Challapa; Rory Smith; Graeme Candlish; et al.
  • 2019-12-01
  • MONTHLY NOTICES OF THE ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY 490 3 : 3694~3666
The disruption of substructure in galaxy clusters likely plays an important role in shaping the cluster population given that a significant fraction of cluster galaxies today have spent time in a previous host system, and thus may have been pre-processed. Once inside the cluster, group galaxies face the combined environmental effects from group and cluster ? so-called post-processing. We investigate these concepts by tracking the evolution of satellites and their hosts after entering the cluster and find that tidal forces during their first pericentric passage are very efficient at breaking up groups, preferentially removing satellites at larger distances from their hosts. 92.2 per?cent of satellites whose host has passed pericentre will leave their host by z = 0, typically no later than half a Gyr after pericentric passage. We find satellites leave with high velocities, and quickly separate to large distances from their hosts, making their identification within the cluster population challenging. Those few satellites (?∼7.8 per cent?) that remain bound to their hosts after a pericentric passage are typically found close to their host centres. This implies that substructure seen in clusters today is very likely on first infall into the cluster, and yet to pass pericentre. This is even more likely if the substructure is extended, with satellites beyond R200 of their host. We find the cluster dominates the tidal mass-loss and destruction of satellites, and is responsible for rapidly halting the accretion of new satellites on to hosts once they reach 0.6?0.8R200 radii from the cluster.