February 12, 2020
Hubble Past and Present: Witnessing the Formation of Galaxies
Speaker: Casey Papovich, Texas A&M University
The formation of galaxies has been one of the great outstanding problems of astrophysics. While cosmologists and astrophysicists have made great progress in mapping dark-matter structures in the Universe in the past 30 years, understanding how galaxies grow within these structures remains one of the great unanswered questions.
Now astrophysicists use data from modern observatories, including NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope, to measure how galaxies evolve. With these data, they have measured when and how quickly galaxies form their stars and how they mature to have structures like those in our own Milky Way. Papovich will discuss ongoing and future research to understand the “formation epochs” of galaxies, including forthcoming prospects using the James Webb Space Telescope, where the ultimate goal is to identify the birth of the first galaxies and to form a coherent picture of galaxy formation.