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Polarization in Monte Carlo radiative transfer and dust scattering polarization signatures of spiral galaxies

Christian Peest (UGent) , Peter Camps (UGent) , Marko Stalevski (UGent) , Maarten Baes (UGent) and R Siebenmorgen
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Abstract
Polarization is an important tool to further the understanding of interstellar dust and the sources behind it. In this paper we describe our implementation of polarization that is due to scattering of light by spherical grains and electrons in the dust Monte Carlo radiative transfer code SKIRT. In contrast to the implementations of other Monte Carlo radiative transfer codes, ours uses co-moving reference frames that rely solely on the scattering processes. It fully supports the peel-off mechanism that is crucial for the efficient calculation of images in 3D Monte Carlo codes. We develop reproducible test cases that push the limits of our code. The results of our program are validated by comparison with analytically calculated solutions. Additionally, we compare results of our code to previously published results. We apply our method to models of dusty spiral galaxies at near-infrared and optical wavelengths. We calculate polarization degree maps and show them to contain signatures that trace characteristics of the dust arms independent of the inclination or rotation of the galaxy.
Keywords
polarization, radiative transfer, methods: numerical, dust, extinction, galaxies: spiral, ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI, INTERSTELLAR DUST, EXTINCTION CURVES, ENERGY-BALANCE, SIMULATIONS, POLARIMETRY, EMISSION, MODELS, LIGHT, SKIRT

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Chicago
Peest, Christian, Peter Camps, Marko Stalevski, Maarten Baes, and R Siebenmorgen. 2017. “Polarization in Monte Carlo Radiative Transfer and Dust  Scattering Polarization Signatures of Spiral Galaxies.” Astronomy & Astrophysics 601.
APA
Peest, C., Camps, P., Stalevski, M., Baes, M., & Siebenmorgen, R. (2017). Polarization in Monte Carlo radiative transfer and dust  scattering polarization signatures of spiral galaxies. ASTRONOMY & ASTROPHYSICS, 601.
Vancouver
1.
Peest C, Camps P, Stalevski M, Baes M, Siebenmorgen R. Polarization in Monte Carlo radiative transfer and dust  scattering polarization signatures of spiral galaxies. ASTRONOMY & ASTROPHYSICS. 2017;601.
MLA
Peest, Christian, Peter Camps, Marko Stalevski, et al. “Polarization in Monte Carlo Radiative Transfer and Dust  Scattering Polarization Signatures of Spiral Galaxies.” ASTRONOMY & ASTROPHYSICS 601 (2017): n. pag. Print.
@article{8521835,
  abstract     = {Polarization is an important tool to further the understanding of interstellar dust and the sources behind it. In this paper we describe our implementation of polarization that is due to scattering of light by spherical grains and electrons in the dust Monte Carlo radiative transfer code SKIRT. In contrast to the implementations of other Monte Carlo radiative transfer codes, ours uses co-moving reference frames that rely solely on the scattering processes. It fully supports the peel-off mechanism that is crucial for the efficient calculation of images in 3D Monte Carlo codes. We develop reproducible test cases that push the limits of our code. The results of our program are validated by comparison with analytically calculated solutions. Additionally, we compare results of our code to previously published results. We apply our method to models of dusty spiral galaxies at near-infrared and optical wavelengths. We calculate polarization degree maps and show them to contain signatures that trace characteristics of the dust arms independent of the inclination or rotation of the galaxy.},
  articleno    = {A92},
  author       = {Peest, Christian and Camps, Peter and Stalevski, Marko and Baes, Maarten and Siebenmorgen, R},
  issn         = {1432-0746},
  journal      = {ASTRONOMY \& ASTROPHYSICS},
  keyword      = {polarization,radiative transfer,methods: numerical,dust,extinction,galaxies: spiral,ACTIVE GALACTIC NUCLEI,INTERSTELLAR DUST,EXTINCTION CURVES,ENERGY-BALANCE,SIMULATIONS,POLARIMETRY,EMISSION,MODELS,LIGHT,SKIRT},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {15},
  title        = {Polarization in Monte Carlo radiative transfer and dust  scattering polarization signatures of spiral galaxies},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/201630157},
  volume       = {601},
  year         = {2017},
}

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