Skip to main content

Research Repository

Advanced Search

Evolution of starburst galaxies in the Illustris simulation

Wilkinson, C. L.; Pimbblet, K. A.; Stott, J. P.; Few, C. G.; Gibson, B. K.


C. L. Wilkinson

J. P. Stott

C. G. Few

Profile Image

Professor Brad Gibson
Head of Dept, Physics & Maths; Director, E.A. Milne Centre for Astrophysics


© 2018 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Royal Astronomical Society. There is a consensus in the literature that starburst galaxies are triggered by interaction events. However, it remains an open question as to what extent both merging and nonmerging interactions have in triggering starbursts. In this study, we make use of the Illustris simulation to test how different triggeringmechanisms can affect starburst events.We examine the star formation rate, colour, and environment of starburst galaxies to determine if this could be why we witness a bimodality in post-starburst populations within observational studies. Further, we briefly test the extent of quenching due to active galactic nuclei feedback. From Illustris, we select 196 starburst galaxies at z = 0.15 and split them into post-merger and pre-merger/harassment-driven starburst samples. We find that 55 % of this sample have not undergone a merger in the past 2 Gyr. Both of our samples are located in low-density environments within the filament regions of the cosmic web; however, we find that premerger/ harassment-driven starbursts are in higher-density environments than post-mergerdriven starbursts. We also find that pre-merger/harassment starbursts are redder than postmerger starbursts; this could be driven by environmental effects. Both, however, produce nuclear starbursts of comparable strengths.


Wilkinson, C. L., Pimbblet, K. A., Stott, J. P., Few, C. G., & Gibson, B. K. (2018). Evolution of starburst galaxies in the Illustris simulation. Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 479(1), 758-767.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 29, 2018
Online Publication Date Jun 7, 2018
Publication Date Sep 1, 2018
Deposit Date Oct 5, 2018
Publicly Available Date Oct 8, 2018
Print ISSN 0035-8711
Electronic ISSN 1365-2966
Publisher Oxford University Press
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 479
Issue 1
Pages 758-767
Public URL
Publisher URL


Article (995 Kb)

Copyright Statement
This article has been accepted for publication in MNRAS ©: 2018 The authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.

You might also like

Downloadable Citations