How do galaxies change with time?

Project ID: 119

Supervisor(s): Sarah Brough

Galaxies in our local Universe are quite different from the galaxies we see a long way away (which is also a long time ago). I study nearby galaxies in great detail to understand the physical mechanisms that cause them to evolve. I am particularly interested in how the galaxies' mass and the environment in which they are found might drive that evolution. To answer these questions I use optical spectroscopy from large galaxy surveys like the Galaxy And Mass Assembly (GAMA) survey (300,000 galaxies) and the SAMI Galaxy Survey (spectroscopic dissection of 3,500 galaxies) as well as very sensitive images from the Hyper-Suprime Cam Subaru Strategic Program survey. There are still many open questions to be answered to help us understand this evolution. These open questions include: what is the best way to measure the environment of a galaxy, what causes the most massive galaxies to stop rotating, and what can the faintest light around galaxies tell us about their history?