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Probing satellite galaxies in the Local Group by using FAST

Jing Li, You-Gang Wang, Min-Zhi Kong, Jie Wang, Xuelei Chen, Rui Guo


The abundance of neutral hydrogen (HI) in satellite galaxies in the local group is important for studying the formation history of our local group. In this work, we generated mock HI satellite galaxies in the Local Group using the high mass resolution hydrodynamic APOSTLE simulation. The simulated HI mass function agrees with the ALFALFA survey very well above 106M, although there is a discrepancy below this scale because of the observed flux limit. After carefully checking various systematic elements in the observations, including fitting of line width, sky coverage, integration time and frequency drift due to uncertainty in a galaxy’s distance, we predicted the abundance of HI in galaxies in a future survey that will be conducted by FAST. FAST has a larger aperture and higher sensitivity than the Arecibo telescope. We found that the HI mass function could be estimated well around 105M if the integration time is 40 minutes. Our results indicate that there are 61 HI satellites in the Local Group and 36 in the FAST field above 105M. This estimation is one order of magnitude better than the current data, and will put a strong constraint on the formation history of the Local Group. Also more high resolution simulated samples are needed to achieve this target.


galaxies: Local Group — galaxies: mass function — methods: numerical

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Print ISSN: 1674-4527

Online ISSN: 2397-6209