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Thermally Unstable Cooling Stimulated by Uplift: The Spoiler Clusters

Martz, C.G.; McNamara, B.R.; Nulsen, P.E.J.; Vantyghem, A.N.; Gingras, M-J.; Babyk, Iu. V.; Russell, H.R.; Edge, A.C.; McDonald, M.; Tamhane, P.D.; Fabian, A.C.; Hogan, M.T.

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C.G. Martz

B.R. McNamara

P.E.J. Nulsen

A.N. Vantyghem

M-J. Gingras

Iu. V. Babyk

H.R. Russell

M. McDonald

P.D. Tamhane

A.C. Fabian

M.T. Hogan


Chandra X-ray observations are analyzed for five galaxy clusters whose atmospheric cooling times, entropy parameters, and ratios of cooling time to freefall time within the central galaxies lie below 1 Gyr, below 30 keV cm2, and between 20 lesssim min(t cool/t ff) lesssim 50, respectively. These thermodynamic properties are commonly associated with molecular clouds, bright Hα emission, and star formation in central galaxies. However, all have Hα luminosities below 1040 erg s−1 in the ACCEPT database. Star formation and molecular gas are absent at the levels seen in other central galaxies with similar atmospheric properties. Only RBS 0533 may host a radio/X-ray bubble, which are commonly observed in cooling atmospheres. Signatures of uplifted, high-metallicity atmospheric gas are absent. Their atmospheres are apparently thermodynamically stable despite the absence of strong nuclear feedback. We suggest that extended filaments of nebular emission and associate molecular clouds are absent at appreciable levels because their central radio sources have failed to lift low-entropy atmospheric gas to an altitude where the ratio of the cooling time to the freefall time falls below unity and the gas becomes thermally unstable.


Martz, C., McNamara, B., Nulsen, P., Vantyghem, A., Gingras, M., Babyk, I. V., …Hogan, M. (2020). Thermally Unstable Cooling Stimulated by Uplift: The Spoiler Clusters. Astrophysical Journal, 897(1), Article 57.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 20, 2020
Online Publication Date Jul 2, 2020
Publication Date 2020-07
Deposit Date Aug 6, 2020
Publicly Available Date Aug 6, 2020
Journal Astrophysical Journal
Print ISSN 0004-637X
Publisher American Astronomical Society
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 897
Issue 1
Article Number 57


Published Journal Article (3.3 Mb)

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© 2020. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

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