Boxy/Peanut/X Bulges, Barlenses and the Thick Part of Galactic Bars: What Are They and How Did They Form?

  • E. Athanassoula
Part of the Astrophysics and Space Science Library book series (ASSL, volume 418)


Bars have a complex three-dimensional shape. In particular their inner part is vertically much thicker than the parts further out. Viewed edge-on, the thick part of the bar is what is commonly known as a boxy-, peanut-, or X- bulge and viewed face-on it is referred to as a barlens. These components are due to disc and bar instabilities and are composed of disc material. I review here their formation, evolution and dynamics, using simulations, orbital structure theory and comparisons to observations.


Periodic Orbit Orbital Structure Disc Galaxy Thick Part Unstable Periodic Orbit 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



I thank Albert Bosma for many stimulating discussions and the editors for inviting me to write this review. Figures 14.4 and 14.5 were made using glnemo2 ( I acknowledge financial support from the People Programme (Marie Curie Actions) of the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme FP7/2007-2013/ under REA grant agreement number PITN-GA-2011-289313 to the DAGAL network. I also acknowledge financial support from the CNES (Center National d’Etudes Spatiales – France) and from the “Programme National de Cosmologie et Galaxies” (PNCG) of CNRS/INSU, France, and HPC resources from GENCI- TGCC/CINES (Grants x2013047098 and x2014047098) and from the Mesocentre of Aix-Marseille Université (program DIFOMER).


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Aix Marseille Université, CNRSLAM (Laboratoire d’Astrophysique de Marseille), UMR 7326Marseille 13France

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