Creating Galaxies in a Virtual Universe

Lead Research Organisation: Durham University
Department Name: Physics

Abstract

Imagine being able to create a virtual the Universe, complete with
realistic galaxies and quasars, inside a computer. The EAGLE project
aims to do exactly this. The first phase of the project make a
ground-breaking step, creating a virtual Universe in which the masses
and sizes of the galaxies formed compared well with observations. This
creates a 'laboratory' with which we can experiment with galaxy
formation, quantifying the roles of the physical processes such as gas
cooling, metal enrichment and feedback from stars and black holes. The
current EAGLE simulations are, however, limited in two
respects. Firstly the simulations only marginally resolve galaxies,
making it hard to reliably study the internal structure of the
galaxies (such as their Hubble-type and morphology). Secondly the
simulations have relatively small volume, sufficient to understand the
average properties of galaxies, but not to understand the diversity of
the galaxy population. A larger volume simulation would also break new
ground in using galaxies to test theoretical models for the growth of
cosmic structure and to search for deviations from Einstein gravity.
In this project, the student will join the Eagle team in advancing to
the next level of realism and volume.

Publications

10 25 50

Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
ST/R504725/1 01/10/2017 30/09/2021
1888107 Studentship ST/R504725/1 01/10/2017 30/06/2021 Joshua James Borrow
 
Description HPC-Europa3 Transnational Access
Amount € 2,688 (EUR)
Funding ID 730897 
Organisation European Commission H2020 
Sector Public
Country Belgium
Start 03/2020 
End 05/2020
 
Description Inter-Lagrangian Transfer 
Organisation Royal Observatory Edinburgh
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution I am the lead author on this work.
Collaborator Contribution Co-authors on work
Impact Collaboration around the SIMBA simulation suite. Lead to the publication of 10.1093/mnras/stz3428.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Inter-Lagrangian Transfer 
Organisation Simons Foundation
Country United States 
Sector Charity/Non Profit 
PI Contribution I am the lead author on this work.
Collaborator Contribution Co-authors on work
Impact Collaboration around the SIMBA simulation suite. Lead to the publication of 10.1093/mnras/stz3428.
Start Year 2018
 
Description Pint of Science Durham 2019 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Regional
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact Pint of Science Durham 2019.

Held 6 total events over 3 days, each engaging with 20-25 people depending on attendance. Audience was general public listening to 2x30m talks in a pub.

Audience enjoyed.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2019
URL http://pintofscience.org
 
Description School Visit 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an open day or visit at my research institution
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach Local
Primary Audience Schools
Results and Impact 20-25 pupils from year 2 class visited Durham's physics department each year. They recieved a tour of our outreach exhibits, supercomputer room, and planetarium.

Visits were greatly enjoyed by students, including some saying it was the best school trip they have ever been on.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018,2019,2020