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Space Science Reviews

, Volume 134, Issue 1–4, pp 337–362 | Cite as

Observations of Metals in the Intra-Cluster Medium

  • N. WernerEmail author
  • F. Durret
  • T. Ohashi
  • S. Schindler
  • R. P. C. Wiersma
Open Access
Article

Abstract

Because of their deep gravitational potential wells, clusters of galaxies retain all the metals produced by the stellar populations of the member galaxies. Most of these metals reside in the hot plasma which dominates the baryon content of clusters. This makes them excellent laboratories for the study of the nucleosynthesis and chemical enrichment history of the Universe. Here we review the history, current possibilities and limitations of the abundance studies, and the present observational status of X-ray measurements of the chemical composition of the intra-cluster medium. We summarise the latest progress in using the abundance patterns in clusters to put constraints on theoretical models of supernovae and we show how cluster abundances provide new insights into the star-formation history of the Universe.

Keywords

Galaxies: clusters Galaxies: abundances X-rays: galaxies: clusters 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. Werner
    • 1
    • 2
    Email author
  • F. Durret
    • 3
  • T. Ohashi
    • 4
  • S. Schindler
    • 5
  • R. P. C. Wiersma
    • 6
  1. 1.SRON Netherlands Institute for Space ResearchUtrechtThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Max-Planck-Institute für AstrophysikGarchingGermany
  3. 3.Institut d’Atrophysique de ParisCNRS, UMR 7095, Université Pierre et Marie CurieParisFrance
  4. 4.Institute of Space and Astronautical ScienceJAXASagamiharaJapan
  5. 5.Institut für Astro- und TeilchenphysikUniversität InnsbruckInnsbruckAustria
  6. 6.Leiden ObservatoryLeiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

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