Semi-analytic galaxy formation in coupled dark energy cosmologies

Fabio Fontanot*, Marco Baldi, Volker Springel, Davide Bianchi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Among the possible alternatives to the standard cosmological model (ΛCDM), coupled dark energy models postulate that dark energy (DE), seen as a dynamical scalar field, may interact with dark matter (DM), giving rise to a 'fifth-force', felt by DM particles only. In this paper, we study the impact of these cosmologies on the statistical properties of galaxy populations by combining high-resolution numerical simulations with semi-analytic models (SAMs) of galaxy formation and evolution. New features have been implemented in the reference SAM in order to have it run self-consistently and calibrated on these cosmological simulations. They include an appropriate modification of the mass-temperature relation and of the baryon fraction in DM haloes, due to the different virial scalings and to the gravitational bias, respectively. Our results show that the predictions of our coupled-DE SAM do not differ significantly from theoretical predictions obtained with standard SAMs applied to a reference Λ cold dark matter (ΛCDM) simulation, implying that the statistical properties of galaxies provide only a weak probe for these alternative cosmological models. On the other hand, we show that both galaxy bias and the galaxy pairwise velocity distribution are sensitive to coupled DE models: this implies that these probes might be successfully applied to disentangle among quintessence, f(R)-gravity and coupled DE models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)978-985
Number of pages8
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Early online date10 Jul 2015
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2015


  • cosmology: theory
  • dark energy
  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: formation


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