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Symposium 241

Abstract details

Galactic Archaeology: Fossil Information preserved in the Stars
J. Bland-Hawthorn

We are entering a new era where it is possible to obtain photometric, dynamical and chemical information on millions of stars with the same observing apparatus. Some of the dynamical information must preserve important clues about early galactic history. We review what are the likely signatures and what these may tell us about the sequence of events which led to the formation of the Galaxy. Some of the weaker signatures will only become evident from uniform phase space information for millions of stars. A highly resolved spectrum of a cool star reveals a rich forest of absorption lines arising from 60 or more chemical elements. The relative strengths of many of these lines reflect the physical conditions in the progenitor cloud. For all galaxy components, there must be a great deal of fossil information locked up in these complex chemical signatures, which we review.

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