Date(s) - 21/03/2012
3:30 pm - 4:30 pm
Title: Low-Mass Galaxies at Cosmic High Noon
Speaker: Dr. Marcin Sawicki – St. Mary’s University
Location: ABB 102
Galaxies are giant factories that turn primordial gas into stars, energy, and the chemical elements that are necessary for our own existence. The rate at which they were doing this was much higher in the past than it is today and so we need to go into the past to study them. To date, such observational efforts have largely focused on the easier-to-study – but relatively rare – luminous objects that form stars at the very high rates. In contrast, their fainter, less active cousins have thus far been largely ignored. But we ignore them at our peril! Although individually faint, these fainter galaxies are very numerous and so, collectively, are extremely important contributors to the production of stars and chemical elements in the cosmos. I will describe our current understanding of what these numerous, faint objects are, how they differ from their better-studied, luminous cousins, and what they teach us about how galaxies form and evolve.