Astronomy & Astrophysics Seminar: Star Formation in the Multiphase-Turbulent Interstellar Medium: From Early Cosmic Times to the Milky Way

Shmuel Bialy, Harvard

21 October 2020, 14:00 
Astronomy & Astrophysics Seminar


I will start with a broad review of the field of star formation and galaxy evolution, and some pressing open questions. I will then dive into the star-forming interstellar medium (ISM), asking the question, what regulates the star formation process? I will discuss the multiphase structure of the ISM, key heating-cooling processes and chemical processes in the ISM, and interstellar turbulence, all of which may play an important role for regulating star formation. I will focus on a particularly appealing theory for star formation where gas heating by far-UV radiation from young stars (and by cosmic-rays in some galaxies), may provide a natural feedback loop, and thus organically self-regulate star-formation in galactic disks, and present recent results (Bialy 2020, ApJ accepted) for the link between star-formation rate and far-UV radiation intensity. I will conclude with future prospects: Charting new ways for constraining poorly known interstellar properties: turbulence, 3D ISM structure, low energy cosmic-ray spectra, and our plan to construct an improved star-formation model for next-generation large scale cosmological simulations (i.e., IllustrisTNG successors).


Seminar Organizer: Dr. Iair Arcavi

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