I review the connection between dynamics and the baryonic mass distribution in rotationally supported galaxies. The enclosed dynamical mass-to-light ratio increases with decreasing galaxy luminosity and surface brightness. The correlation with surface brightness appears to be the more fundamental, with the dependence on luminosity following simply from the weaker correlation between luminosity and surface brightness. In addition to this global relation, there is also a local relation between the amplitude of the mass discrepancy and the acceleration predicted by the observed distribution of baryons. I provide an empirical calibration of this mass discrepancy-acceleration relation. The data are consistent with the operation of a singe effective force law in disk galaxies, making this relation tantamount to a natural law. I further provide formulae by which the radial dark matter distribution can be estimated from surface photometry. The form of the dark matter halo depends uniquely on the distribution of baryons in each galaxy, and in general is neither a cusp nor a core. It remains difficult to see how galaxy formation models can reproduce the observed behavior, which is uniquely predicted by MOND.
Fri, 12 Dec 14
Comments: Accepted for publication in Galaxies. Solicited contribution to the Special Issue “Beyond Standard Gravity and Cosmology” (ed. A. Diaferio). 23 pages, 7 figures