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Cosmic Ballet III: Halo spin evolution in the cosmic web

Ganeshaiah Veena, Punyakoti and Cautun, Marius and van de Weygaert, Rien and Tempel, Elmo and Frenk, Carlos S (2021) 'Cosmic Ballet III: Halo spin evolution in the cosmic web.', Monthly notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 503 (2). pp. 2280-2299.


We explore the evolution of halo spins in the cosmic web using a very large sample of dark matter haloes in the Lambda cold dark matter Planck-Millennium N-body simulation. We use the NEXUS+ multiscale formalism to identify the hierarchy of filaments and sheets of the cosmic web at several redshifts. We find that at all times the magnitude of halo spins correlates with the web environment, being largest in filaments, and, for the first time, we show that it also correlates with filament thickness as well as the angle between spin orientation and the spine of the host filament. For example, massive haloes in thick filaments spin faster than their counterparts in thin filaments, while for low-mass haloes the reverse is true. We have also studied the evolution of alignment between halo spin orientations and the preferential axes of filaments and sheets. The alignment varies with halo mass, with the spins of low-mass haloes being predominantly along the filament spine, while those of high-mass haloes being predominantly perpendicular to the filament spine. On average, for all halo masses, halo spins become more perpendicular to the filament spine at later times. At all redshifts, the spin alignment shows a considerable variation with filament thickness, with the halo mass corresponding to the transition from parallel to perpendicular alignment varying by more than one order of magnitude. The cosmic web environmental dependence of halo spin magnitude shows little evolution for z ≤ 2 and is likely a consequence of the correlations in the initial conditions or high redshift effects.

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Publisher statement:This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2021 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Date accepted:27 January 2021
Date deposited:22 September 2021
Date of first online publication:13 February 2021
Date first made open access:22 September 2021

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