arXiv: Astrophysics of Galaxies | 2019

Origin of the excess of high-energy retrograde stars in the Galactic halo



We report on the very low $\\alpha$-element abundances of a group of metal-poor stars with high orbital energy and with large retrograde motion in the Milky Way halo, whose excess has been reported recently from metallicity and kinematics. We constructed a sample of halo stars with measured abundances and precise kinematics, including $\\sim 880$ stars with [{{Fe}/{H}}]$<-0.7$, by crossmatching the Stellar Abundances for Galactic Archaeology database to the second data release of Gaia. Three regions in the energy-angular momentum space have been selected: innermost halo, Gaia Enceladus/Sausage, and high-energy retrograde halo. While the innermost halo and Gaia Enceladus regions have chemical abundances consistent with high- and low-$\\alpha$ populations in the halo, respectively, chemical abundances of stars in the high-energy retrograde halo are different from the two populations; their [{X}/{Fe}], where X represents Na, Mg, and Ca, are even lower than those in Gaia Enceladus. These abundances, as well as their low mean metallicity, provide a new support for the idea that the retrograde component is dominated by an accreted dwarf galaxy which has a longer star formation timescale and is less massive than Gaia Enceladus/Sausage.

Volume None
Pages None
DOI 10.3847/2041-8213/ab0ec0
Language English
Journal arXiv: Astrophysics of Galaxies

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