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Activity Number: 546 - Astrostatistics Interest Group: Student Paper Award
Type: Topic Contributed
Date/Time: Thursday, August 11, 2022 : 10:30 AM to 12:20 PM
Sponsor: Astrostatistics Special Interest Group
Abstract #322547
Title: The Mass of the Milky Way from the H3 Survey
Author(s): Jeff Shen*
Companies: University of Toronto
Keywords: astronomy; astrostatistics; Markov chain Monte Carlo; Milky Way Galaxy; Bayesian modelling; computational methods

The mass of the Milky Way is a critical quantity which, despite decades of research, remains uncertain within a factor of two. Until recently, most studies have used dynamical tracers in the inner regions of the halo, relying on extrapolations to estimate the mass of the Milky Way. In this paper, we extend the hierarchical Bayesian model applied in Eadie & Juri? (2019) to study the mass distribution of the Milky Way halo; the new model allows for the use of all available 6D phase-space measurements. We use kinematic data of halo stars out to 142 kpc, obtained from the H3 Survey and Gaia EDR3, to infer the mass of the Galaxy. Inference is carried out with the No-U-Turn sampler, a fast and scalable extension of Hamiltonian Monte Carlo. We report a median mass enclosed within 100 kpc of M(< 100kpc)=0.69+/-0.05x10^12 M_sun, or a virial mass of M200=M(< 216.2kpc)=1.08+/-0.12x10^12 M_sun, in good agreement with other recent estimates. We analyze our results using posterior predictive checks and find limitations in the model's ability to describe the data. In particular, we find sensitivity with respect to substructure in the halo, which limits the precision of our mass estimates to ?15%

Authors who are presenting talks have a * after their name.

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