Department of Relativistic Astrophysics and Cosmology
 
 
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13. Bratek Ł., Sikora S., Jałocha J., Kutschera M.
A lower bound on the Milky Way mass from general phase-space distribution function models
Astron. Astrophys. , vol. 562, p. A134 (2014).
[abstract] [preprint] [journal] [download]

Abstract:
We model the phase-space distribution of the kinematic tracers using general, smooth distribution functions to derive a conservative lower bound on the total mass within ≈150−200 kpc. By approximating the potential as Keplerian, the phase-space distribution can be simplified to that of a smooth distribution of energies and eccentricities. Our approach naturally allows for calculating moments of the distribution function, such as the radial profile of the orbital anisotropy. We systematically construct a family of phase-space functions with the resulting radial velocity dispersion overlapping with the one obtained using data on radial motions of distant kinematic tracers, while making no assumptions about the density of the tracers and the velocity anisotropy parameter β regarded as a function of the radial variable. While there is no apparent upper bound for the Milky Way mass, at least as long as only the radial motions are concerned, we find a sharp lower bound for the mass that is small. In particular, a mass value of 2.4e11 solar mass, obtained in the past for lower and intermediate radii, is still consistent with the dispersion profile at larger radii. Compared with much greater mass values in the literature, this result shows that determining the Milky Way mass is strongly model-dependent. We expect a similar reduction of mass estimates in models assuming more realistic mass profiles.

14. Jałocha J., Sikora S., Bratek. Ł, Kutschera M.
Constraining the vertical structure of the Milky Way rotation by microlensing in a finite-width global disk model
Astron. Astrophys. , vol. 566, p. A87 (2014).
[abstract] [preprint] [journal]

Abstract:
We model the vertical structure of mass distribution of the Milky Way galaxy in the framework of a finite-width global disk model. Assuming only the Galactic rotation curve, we tested the predictions of the model inside the solar orbit for two measurable processes that are unrelated to each other: the gravitational microlensing that allows one to fix the disk width-scale by the best fit to measurements, and the vertical gradient of rotation modeled in the quasi-circular orbits approximation. The former is sensitive to the gravitating mass in compact objects, the latter to all kinds of gravitating matter. The analysis points to a small width-scale of the considered disks and an at-most insignificant contribution of non-baryonic dark matter in the solar circle. The predicted high vertical gradient values in the rotation are consistent with the gradient measurements.

15. Sebastian J. Szybka
On gravitational interactions between two bodies
In "Mathematical Structures of the Universe", eds. M. Eckstein, M. Heller, S. J. Szybka, CCPress, pp. 137-151 (2014).
[abstract] [preprint] [journal]

Abstract:
Many physicists, following Einstein, believe that the ultimate aim of theoretical physics is to find a unified theory of all interactions which would not depend on any free dimensionless constant, i.e., a dimensionless constant that is only empirically determinable. We do not know if such a theory exists. Moreover, if it exists, there seems to be no reason for it to be comprehensible for the human mind. On the other hand, as pointed out in Wigner's famous paper, human mathematics is unbelievably successful in natural science. This seeming paradox may be mitigated by assuming that the mathematical structure of physical reality has many `layers'. As time goes by, physicists discover new theories that correspond to the physical reality on the deeper and deeper level. In this essay, I will take a narrow approach and discuss the mathematical structure behind a single physical phenomenon - gravitational interaction between two bodies. The main aim of this essay is to put some recent developments of this topic in a broader context. For the author it is an exercise - to investigate history of his scientific topic in depth.

16. Sebastian J. Szybka, Krzysztof Głód, Michał J. Wyrębowski, Alicja Konieczny
Inhomogeneity effect in Wainwright-Marshman space-times
Phys. Rev. D: Part. Fields , vol. 89, p. 044033 (2014).
[abstract] [preprint] [journal] [download]

Abstract:
Green and Wald have presented a mathematically rigorous framework to study, within general relativity, the effect of small scale inhomogeneities on the global structure of space-time. The framework relies on the existence of a one-parameter family of metrics that approaches the effective background metric in a certain way. Although it is not necessary to know this family in an exact form to predict properties of the backreaction effect, it would be instructive to find explicit examples. In this paper, we provide the first example of such a family of exact non-vacuum solutions to the Einstein's equations. It belongs to the Wainwright-Marshman class and satisfies all of the assumptions of the Green-Wald framework.

17. Editors: Michał Eckstein, Michael Heller, Sebastian J. Szybka
Mathematical Structures of the Universe
Copernicus Center Press (2014) [abstract] [journal]

Abstract:
The book contains a collection of essays on mathematical structures that serve us to model the Universe. The authors discuss such topics as: the interplay between mathematics and physics, geometrical structures in physical models, observational and conceptual aspects of cosmology. The reader can also contemplate the scientific method on the verge of its limits.

18. Mikko Lavinto, Syksy Rasanen, Sebastian J. Szybka
Average expansion rate and light propagation in a cosmological Tardis spacetime
JCAP, vol. 12, p. 051 (2013).
[abstract] [preprint] [journal] [download]

Abstract:
We construct the first exact statistically homogeneous and isotropic cosmological solution in which inhomogeneity has a significant effect on the expansion rate. The universe is modelled as a Swiss Cheese, with Einstein-de Sitter background and inhomogeneous holes. We show that if the holes are described by the quasispherical Szekeres solution, their average expansion rate is close to the background under certain rather general conditions. We specialise to spherically symmetric holes and violate one of these conditions. As a result, the average expansion rate at late times grows relative to the background, i.e. backreaction is significant. The holes fit smoothly into the background, but are larger on the inside than a corresponding background domain: we call them Tardis regions. We study light propagation, find the effective equations of state and consider the relation of the spatially averaged expansion rate to the redshift and the angular diameter distance.

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