Observing Chaos in Disk Galaxies

  • Preben Grosbøl
Part of the Lecture Notes in Physics book series (LNP, volume 626)


Regions in disk galaxies where one would expect to find chaotic behavior are likely to be associated with major stellar resonances such as the co-rotation. The possible identification of such locations in real galaxies is illustrated by examples of four spiral galaxies observed in the K band. Observational issues related to the detection of chaotic regions are discussed. Although surface photometry may suggest chaotic regions, it is essential to compare detailed velocity profiles with dynamic models to estimate the probability of such claims. Finally, the feasibility of performing observations of chaos with current state-of-the-art facilities such as the VLT is considered. It is found that it should be possible down to a surface brightness level of I ≈ 20 mag/arcsec2 corresponding to the end of bars in typical disk galaxies whereas access to detailed studies of chaos in the main spiral pattern would require more powerful facilities.


Chaotic Behavior Spiral Galaxy Star Formation Rate Disk Galaxy Chaotic Region 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Preben Grosbøl
    • 1
  1. 1.European Southern ObservatoryGarchingGermany

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