Ram pressure stripping and ISM disc truncation: prediction versus observation

Seona Lee, Yun Kyeong Sheen, Hyein Yoon, Yara Jaffé, Aeree Chung

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Ram pressure stripping (RPS) is known to be a key environmental effect that can remove interstellar gas from galaxies in a cluster. The RPS process is commonly described as a competition between the ram pressure by the intracluster medium and the anchoring pressure on the interstellar medium by the gravitational potential of a galaxy. However, the actual gas stripping process can be more complicated due to the complexity of gas physics such as compression and geometrical self-shielding as well as cooling and heating. In order to verify how well the observed signatures of the RPS process can be understood as simple momentum transfer, we compare the stripping radii of Virgo cluster galaxies in different stages of RPS measured from the H I observation with the predicted gas truncation radii for the given conditions. For the sample undergoing active RPS, we generally find good agreements between predictions and observations within a measurement uncertainty. On the other hand, galaxies likely in the early or later RPS stage and/or the ones with signs of environmental impacts other than RPS such as tidal interaction or starvation show some discrepancies. Our results imply that the conventional RPS relation works reasonably well in a broad sense when RPS is the most dominant process and the galaxy is located where the surrounding environment can be well defined. Otherwise, more careful inspections on the second mechanism and local environment are required to assess the impact of RPS on the target.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2912-2924
Number of pages13
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Dec 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We are grateful to the anonymous referee for useful comments and suggestions which helped to improve the manuscript tremendously. AC and SL acknowledge support by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF), Grant No. 2018R1D1A1B07048314, 2022R1A2C1002982, and 2022R1A6A1A03053472. YKS acknowledges support from the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Ministry of Science and ICT (NRF-2019R1C1C1010279). HY acknowledges support from the Australian Research Council Centre of Excellence for All Sky Astrophysics in 3 Dimensions (ASTRO 3D), through Project No. CE170100013. YJ acknowledges financial support from ANID BASAL Project No. FB210003 and FONDECYT Iniciación 2018 No. 11180558.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Author(s)

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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