Ministerio de Ciencia, Innovación y Universidades Gobierno de Canarias Universidad de La Laguna CSIC Centro de Excelencia Severo Ochoa

Astrophysics Research Projects

The Local Universe

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Formation and Evolution of Galaxies: Observations in Infrared and other Wavelengths (P/308610)


Rui Márques Coelho Chaves, Camilo E. Jiménez Angel, Stefan Geier

Main international Collaborations: Herschel SPIRE, HerMES, Herschel-ATLAS, SPICA, SAFARI, SWIRE, SERVS, DEEPDRILL, SDSS-III y SDSS-IV, VISTA-VHS, BELLS GALLERY, etc.


This IAC research group carries out several extragalactic projects in different spectral ranges, using space as well as ground-based telescopes, to study the cosmological evolution of galaxies and the origin of nuclear activity in active galaxies. The group is a member of the international consortium which built the SPIRE instrument for the Herschel Space Observatory and of the European consortium which is developing the SAFARI instrument for the infrared space telescope SPICA of the space agencies ESA and JAXA.

The main projects in 2017 were:

  • Several extragalactic projects carried out with the Herschel Space Observatory, in particular the HerMES and Herschel-ATLAS Key Projects.
  • Follow-up observations with the Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC), WHT, VLT, ALMA, HST, Spitzer and other telescopes of high-redshift Herschel galaxies.
  • Participation in the development of the SAFARI instrument, one of the European contributions to the SPICA infrared space telescope.
  • Sloan Digital Sky Survey III and IV: Lyman alpha emitting galaxies of the BELLS GALLERY project and other very luminous Lyman alpha emitting galaxies
  • Studies of galaxies at high redshift in the HST Frontier Fields

In 2017 this IAC research group has contributed to several Herschel extragalactic projects, including the largest Guaranteed Time Key Project (HerMES) and the largest one in Open Time (Herschel-ATLAS). The results published in 2017 include the analysis of a sample of high-redshift Herschel galaxies observed with ALMA and IRAM NOEMA (Fudamoto et al. 2017) and of a pair of hyper-luminous galaxies at redshift 6 studied with ALMA and other telescopes (Riechers et al. 2017). The last results were covered by several press releases, of ESA, NRAO, ALMA, etc.

As part of the BELLS GALLERY project, a very bright ,and intrinsically very luminous, lensed Lyman alpha emitting galaxy was discovered with the WHT and GTC telescopes (Marques-Chaves et al. 2017), with associated press releases of ING and IAC. This result was selected as one of the 2016 highlights of the Gran Telescopio Canarias in the annual report of the International Scientific Committee of the Canary Islands Observatories.

In the study of a distant galaxy, gravitational lensed by the Abell 2744 galaxy cluster, one of the HST Frontier Fields, Laporte et al. (2017) found cosmic dust in the re-ionization era of the Universe, when the Universe was only four percent of its present age. These results confirmed spectroscopically one of the most distant galaxies known, the most distant observed with ALMA. The results were covered by press releases of ESO, ALMA, etc.

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