Comparative testing of dark matter models with 15 HSB and 15 LSB galaxies

E. Kun, Z. Keresztes, A. Simkó, G. Szucs, L. Gergely

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Context. We assemble a database of 15 high surface brightness (HSB) and 15 low surface brightness (LSB) galaxies, for which surface brightness density and spectroscopic rotation curve data are both available and representative for various morphologies. We use this dataset to test the Navarro-Frenk-White, the Einasto, and the pseudo-isothermal sphere dark matter models. Aims. We investigate the compatibility of the pure baryonic model and baryonic plus one of the three dark matter models with observations on the assembled galaxy database. When a dark matter component improves the fit with the spectroscopic rotational curve, we rank the models according to the goodness of fit to the datasets. Methods. We constructed the spatial luminosity density of the baryonic component based on the surface brightness profile of the galaxies. We estimated the mass-To-light (M/L) ratio of the stellar component through a previously proposed color-mass-To-light ratio relation (CMLR), which yields stellar masses independent of the photometric band. We assumed an axissymetric baryonic mass model with variable axis ratios together with one of the three dark matter models to provide the theoretical rotational velocity curves, and we compared them with the dataset. In a second attempt, we addressed the question whether the dark component could be replaced by a pure baryonic model with fitted M/L ratios, varied over ranges consistent with CMLR relations derived from the available stellar population models. We employed the Akaike information criterion to establish the performance of the best-fit models. Results. For 7 galaxies (2 HSB and 5 LSB), neither model fits the dataset within the 1σ confidence level. For the other 23 cases, one of the models with dark matter explains the rotation curve data best. According to the Akaike information criterion, the pseudo-isothermal sphere emerges as most favored in 14 cases, followed by the Navarro-Frenk-White (6 cases) and the Einasto (3 cases) dark matter models. We find that the pure baryonic model with fitted M/L ratios falls within the 1σ confidence level for 10 HSB and 2 LSB galaxies, at the price of growing the M/Ls on average by a factor of two, but the fits are inferior compared to the best-fitting dark matter model.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA42
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - Dec 1 2017



  • Dark matter
  • Galaxies: halos
  • Galaxies: structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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