Astrophysical Journal Letters
LONG-LIVED SPIRAL STRUCTURE for GALAXIES with INTERMEDIATE-SIZE BULGES
Spiral structure in disk galaxies is modeled with nine collisionless N-body simulations including live disks, halos, and bulges with a range of masses. Two of these simulations make long-lasting and strong two-arm spiral wave modes that last for ∼5 Gyr with constant pattern speed. These two had a light stellar disk and the largest values of the Toomre Q parameter in the inner region at the time the spirals formed, suggesting the presence of a Q-barrier to wave propagation resulting from the bulge. The relative bulge mass in these cases is about 10%. Models with weak two-arm spirals had pattern speeds that followed the radial dependence of the Inner Lindblad Resonance.