Rotation and Turbulence of the Hot ICM in Galaxy Clusters

Fang, Taotao
Humphrey, Philip J.
Buote, David A.
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
Cosmological simulations of galaxy clusters typically find that the weight of a cluster at a given radius is not balanced entirely by the thermal gas pressure of the hot ICM, with theoretical studies emphasizing the role of random turbulent motions to provide the necessary additional pressure support. Using a set of high-resolution, hydrodynamical simulations of galaxy clusters that include radiative cooling and star formation, we find instead that in the most relaxed clusters rotational support exceeds that from random turbulent motions for radii 0.1 - 0.5 r_500, and that the observed clusters are much rounder than the simulated, relaxed clusters within ~ 0.4 r_500. Moreover, while the observed clusters display an average ellipticity profile that does not vary significantly with radius, the ellipticity of the relaxed CDM clusters declines markedly with increasing radius, suggesting that the ICM of the observed clusters rotates less rapidly than that of the relaxed CDM clusters out to ~ 0.6 r_500. We also find the ellipticity profile of a simulated cluster without radiative cooling is in much better agreement with the observations, implying that over-cooling has a substantial impact on the gas dynamics and morphology out to larger radii than previously recognized. It also suggests that the 10%-20% systematic errors from non-thermal gas pressure support reported for simulated cluster masses, obtained from fitting simulated X-ray data over large radial ranges within r_500, may need to be revised downward. These results demonstrate the utility of X-ray ellipticity profiles as a probe of ICM rotation and over-cooling which should be used to constrain future cosmological cluster simulations.
Comment: 13 pages, 8 figures, accepted for publication in ApJ