Small scale clustering of galaxies

Douglas Watson


In this talk, I focus on using the small-scale clustering of galaxies to study their fate once they have merged into larger systems and become satellites. Specifically, I will focus on two aspects of this work. First, I will discuss recent work that has uncovered a strong luminosity trend of the radial density profile of satellite galaxies, wherein bright satellites are poor tracers of the dominant underlying dark matter, possibly leading to a test of LCDM at the extreme small scales. Second, I will discuss a powerful new technique that uses the spatial clustering of satellite galaxies to understand how their stellar mass loss occurs. Understanding how satellite galaxies can lose stellar mass yield direct predictions for the amount of di#use intrahalo light (IHL) at varying scales, and could prove valuable for providing insight into the physics of galaxy formation. I will present preliminary constraints on stellar mass loss and IHL using clustering measurements from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey.