Beyond MHD in galaxy clusters

I. J. Parrish, E. Quataert, P. Sharma

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


We demonstrate that the intracluster medium (ICM) of clusters of galaxies is everywhere convectively unstable to one of two instabilities driven by anisotropic thermal conduction along magnetic field lines, despite having stably stratified entropy gradients. Outside any cooling core, the magnetothermal instability (MTI) reorients magnetic fields to be largely radial, enhancing the effective radial thermal conductivity. In galaxy clusters with a cooling core, the heat-flux-driven buoyancy instability (HBI) has the opposite effect. By reducing the effective radial thermal conductivity, the HBI can hasten the onset of a cooling catastrophe for low central entropy clusters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMonster's Fiery Breath
Subtitle of host publicationFeedback in Galaxies, Groups, and Clusters - Proceedings of the International Conference
Number of pages5
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference on Monster's Fiery Breath: Feedback in Galaxies, Groups, and Clusters - Madison, WI, United States
Duration: Jun 1 2009Jun 5 2009

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


OtherInternational Conference on Monster's Fiery Breath: Feedback in Galaxies, Groups, and Clusters
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityMadison, WI

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Physics and Astronomy


  • Clusters
  • Cooling-flows


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