Non-Kolmogorov turbulence in multiphase intracluster medium driven by cold gas precipitation and AGN jets

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C. Wang, M. Ruszkowski, C. Pfrommer, S. Peng Oh, H.-Y. K. Yang

AGN feedback is responsible for maintaining plasma in global thermal balance in extended halos of elliptical galaxies and galaxy clusters. Local thermal instability in the hot gas leads to the formation of precipitating cold gas clouds that feed the central supermassive black holes, thus heating the hot gas and maintaining global thermal equilibrium. We perform three dimensional MHD simulations of self-regulated AGN feedback in a Perseus-like galaxy cluster with the aim of understanding the impact of the feedback physics on the turbulence properties of the hot and cold phases of the ICM. We find that, in general, the cold phase velocity structure function (VSF) is steeper than the prediction from Kolmogorov's theory. We attribute the physical origin of the steeper slope of the cold phase VSF to the driving of turbulent motions primarily by the gravitational acceleration acting on the ballistic clouds. We demonstrate that, in the pure hydrodynamical case, the precipitating cold filaments may be the dominant agent driving turbulence in the hot ICM. The arguments in favor of this hypothesis are that: (i) the cold phase mass dominates over hot gas mass in the inner cool core; (ii) hot and cold gas velocities are spatially correlated; (iii) both the cold and hot phase velocity distributions are radially biased. We show that, in the MHD case, the turbulence in the ambient hot medium (excluding the jet cone regions) can also be driven by the AGN jets. The driving is then facilitated by enhanced coupling due to magnetic fields of the ambient gas and the AGN jets. In the MHD case, turbulence may thus be driven by a combination of AGN jet stirring and filament motions. We conclude that future observations, including those from high spatial and spectral resolution X-ray missions, may help to constrain self-regulated AGN feedback by quantifying the multi-temperature VSF in the ICM.

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