3D radiative transfer studies of HII/PDR complexes in star-forming galaxies

Lead Research Organisation: University College London
Department Name: Physics and Astronomy


Each new generation of stars in our own and other galaxies contributes to the enrichment of the interstellar medium (ISM) in heavy elements. Over time, these heavy elements, which may be injected as gas or dust particles, and the outflows that carry them, progressively modify the way that new stars and planets form, as well as the overall properties of the galaxies themselves. Gaining a greater understanding of star formation and the ISM evolution of galaxies, and their interplay, has provided the motivation for the construction of a large number of international facilities, including the VLT, ALMA, the Spitzer Space Telescope, the Herschel Space Observatory and the James Webb Space Telescope. These missions will give us access to observations of unprecedented spatial and spectral resolution. Due to these dramatic observational advances, there is a distinct need for theoretical tools that will allow us to correctly interpret the wealth of observational data that we will receive: the research outlined in this proposal aims to provide the community with a state-of-the-art self-consistent 3-dimensional radiative transfer and chemical modelling tool which will be able to simulate and fit multi-wavelength photometric and spectroscopic high resolution data from star forming regions in our own and other galaxies. The products of this plan of research will form an essential part of the preparatory science for upcoming missions, such as Herschel, ALMA and the JWST.


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Description We have developed a new set of codes and we used them to interpret atomic and molecular data of galaxies
Exploitation Route The code needs to be made open source and this is the next step - we have everything ready to be put on the website and will be done in the next month
Sectors Other