A Definitive Study of Dust in the Local Universe

18 July 2014 → 30 April 2018
European funding: framework programme
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Astronomy and space sciences
Project description

The European Space Agency has invested heavily in two cornerstone missions: Herschel and Planck. These space observatories provide us with an unprecedented opportunity to study, at far infrared wavelengths, the cold Universe beyond our Galaxy. As these missions come to an end (2013) they will leave a huge legacy data set that we intend to exploit by utilising the complimentary expert skills of researchers at six sites across Europe. To maximise our spatial resolution and sensitivity to cosmic dust our intention is to analyse in detail 3045 local galaxies (v<3000 km s) selected via their near infrared luminosity (stellar mass). This data provides us with an opportunity to study cosmic dust in galaxies answer fundamental questions about: the origin of chemical elements physical processes interstellar medium (ISM) its effects on emitted stellar radiation relation star formation and far background. In course our work we will develop tools computer models that help relate observed emission properties (chemical composition size distribution temperature) origins (evolved stars super novae growth ISM) destroy it (high energy collisions shock heated gas). To interpret use own world leading Monte Carlo photon tracing radiative transfer model state-of-the-art properties. carry out this research need combine Herschel Planck from many other recently compiled databases contain observations sample at wavelengths thus creating definitive legacy database DustPedia.