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Section 1 of the FM14 focus on bridging the astronomy research and outreach communities - recent highlights, emerging collaborations, best practices and support structures. This paper also contains supplementary materials that point to contributed talks and poster presentations that can be found online.
We present a multi-frequency study of the intermediate spiral SAB(r)bc type galaxy NGC 6744, using available data from the Chandra X-Ray telescope, radio continuum data from the Australia Telescope Compact Array and Murchison Widefield Array, and Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer infrared observations. We identify 117 X-ray sources and 280 radio sources. Of these, we find nine sources in common between the X-ray and radio catalogues, one of which is a faint central black hole with a bolometric radio luminosity similar to the Milky Way’s central black hole. We classify 5 objects as supernova remnant (SNR) candidates, 2 objects as likely SNRs, 17 as H ii regions, 1 source as an AGN; the remaining 255 radio sources are categorised as background objects and one X-ray source is classified as a foreground star. We find the star-formation rate (SFR) of NGC 6744 to be in the range 2.8–4.7 M⊙~yr − 1 signifying the galaxy is still actively forming stars. The specific SFR of NGC 6744 is greater than that of late-type spirals such as the Milky Way, but considerably less that that of a typical starburst galaxy.
Our view of the low-redshift Cosmic Web has been revolutionized by galaxy redshift surveys such as 6dFGS, SDSS and 2MRS. However, the trade-off between depth and angular coverage limits a systematic three-dimensional account of the entire sky beyond the Local Volume (z < 0.05). In order to reliably map the Universe to cosmologically significant depths over the full celestial sphere, one must draw on multiwavelength datasets and state-of-the-art photometric redshift techniques. We have undertaken a dedicated program of cross-matching the largest photometric all-sky surveys – 2MASS, WISE and SuperCOSMOS – to obtain accurate redshift estimates of millions of galaxies. The first outcome of these efforts – the 2MASS Photometric Redshift catalog (2MPZ, Bilicki et al. 2014a) – has been publicly released and includes almost 1 million galaxies with a mean redshift of z=0.08. Here we summarize how this catalog was constructed and how using the WISE mid-infrared sample together with SuperCOSMOS optical data allows us to push to redshift shells of z∼ 0.2 –0.3 on unprecedented angular scales. Our catalogs, with ∼ 20 million sources in total, provide access to cosmological volumes crucial for studies of local galaxy flows (clustering dipole, bulk flow) and cross-correlations with the cosmic microwave background such as the integrated Sachs-Wolfe effect or lensing studies.
The formation of the first generations of stars at redshifts z ≥ 15 − 20 signaled the transition from the simple initial state of the universe to one of ever increasing complexity. We here review recent progress in understanding the assembly process of the first galaxies, starting with cosmological initial conditions and modelling the detailed physics of star formation. In particular, we study the role of HD cooling in ionized primordial gas, the impact of UV radiation produced by the first stars, and the propagation of the supernova blast waves triggered at the end of their brief lives. We conclude by discussing how the chemical abundance patterns observed in extremely low-metallicity stars allow us to probe the properties of the first stars.
The Triangulum Spiral Galaxy Messier 33 offers unique insights into the building of a galactic disk. We identify spectacular arcs of intermediate age (0.6 Gyr − 2 Gyr) stars in the low-metallicity outer disk. The northern arc spans ~120 degrees in azimuth and up to 5 arcmin in width. The arcs are located 2-3 disk scale lengths from the galaxy centre (where 1 disk scale length is equivalent to 0.1 degrees in the V-band) and lie precisely where there is a warp in the HI profile of M33. Warps and infall are inextricably linked (Binney, 1992). We present spectroscopy of candidate stars in the outer northern arc, secured using the Keck I telescope in Hawaii. The target stars have estimated visual magnitudes as faint as V~ 25m. Absorption bands of CN are seen in all spectra reported in this review talk, confirming their carbon star status. Also presented are PAH emissivity radial profiles generated from IRAC observations of M33 using the Spitzer Space Telescope. A dramatic change of phase in the m = 2 Fourier component is detected at the domain of the arcs. M33 serves as an excellent example how the disks of spiral galaxies in our Universe are built: as dynamically open systems, growing from the inward, outward.
The Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS) has observed a number of Wolf-Rayet stars and galaxies at J (1.25 μm), H (1.65 μm), and Ks (2.17 μm), as part of its systematic coverage of the entire sky with automated 1.3-m telescopes at Mt. Hopkins, AZ, and CTIO, Chile. The cameras observe the sky in the three channels simultaneously, using 256 x 256 HgCdTe-detector arrays. The survey samples the sky in 6° x 8.'3 tiles. The 2MASS Production Processing System transforms the raw binary survey data to final atlas images and source extractions with precise photometric calibration and astrometric positions. The survey's 10σ sensitivity is 15.8 mag at J, 15.1 at H, and 14.3 at Ks. In this poster we will present results from our analysis of several objects. We have observed WR stars both with and without associated ring nebulae. 2MASS imaging of the WR galaxies is far less affected by extinction, which can obscure much of the star formation activity. We will place these starburst dwarf galaxies in context with other galaxies, based on their near-IR colors and properties.
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