On the reliability of proxies for globular cluster collision rates

Thomas Maccarone, Mark B Peacock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A variety of different proxies for the stellar collision rates in globular clusters is used in the literature, depending on the quality of data available. We present comparisons between these proxies and the full integrated collision rate for different King models. The most commonly used proxy, Γ, defined to be ?, where ρ0 is the central cluster density, and rc is the core radius based on the 1966 King model, is an accurate representation of the collision rate from the King model to within about 25 per cent for all but the least concentrated globular clusters. By integrating over King models with a range of parameters, we show that ?, defined to be ?, where ? is the average density within the half-light radius, and rh is the half-light radius, is only marginally better correlated with the full King model collision rate than is the cluster luminosity. The two galaxies where results of King model fitting have been reported in detail show a dearth of core-collapsed clusters relative to
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1875
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
StatePublished - Aug 2011


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