We suggest that nonlinear perturbations which lead to thermal instabilities in cooling flows might start as blobs of interstellar gas which are stripped out of cluster galaxies. Assuming that most of the gas produced by stellar mass loss in cluster galaxies is stripped from the galaxies, the total rate of such stripping is roughly ṀISM ∼ 100 M⊙ yr-1, which is similar to the rates of cooling in cluster cooling flows. It is possible that a substantial portion of the cooling gas originates as blobs of interstellar gas stripped from galaxies. The magnetic fields within and outside of the low-entropy perturbations may help to maintain their identities by suppressing both thermal conduction and Kelvin-Helmholtz instabilities. These density fluctuations may disrupt the propagation of radio jets through the intracluster gas, which may be one mechanism for producing wide-angle-tail radio galaxies.
- Galaxies: clustering
- Galaxies: interactions
- Galaxies: interstellar matter