Project level: PhD

Chemical content is an important signature of a galaxy's lifecycle, as the buildup of elements from hydrogen and helium to heavier 'metals' is intimately linked to its history of star formation. There are two equally-justifiable methods for measuring chemical content based on regions of active star formation within galaxies, but the methods are not properly calibrated, so they do not agree. Moreover, they are valid in different regimes, so that we cannot accurately compare distant galaxies with those nearby, or massive galaxies with small ones.

This project involves working with 3D spectroscopic data to obtain a complete three-dimensional picture of star-forming regions, and recalibrate the chemical content measurements.

Project members

Dr Sarah Sweet

Lecturer in Astrophysics