Astro Seminar:"Probing Galaxy Formation with Modern Cosmological Simulations"

Wed, 02/21/2018 - 14:00
Paul Torrey (MIT)

Cosmological simulations are among the most powerful tools available to probe the non-linear regime of cosmic structure formation.  They also provide a clear test-bed for understanding the impact that hydrodynamics and feedback processes have on the evolution of galaxies.  I will present an overview of modern galaxy formation simulations that couple a novel moving mesh computational method with explicit baryon feedback prescriptions. This approach results in detailed galaxy formation models that reproduce fundamental observations such as the galaxy stellar mass function, cosmic star formation rate density, and galaxy morphological diversity.  I will briefly overview the numerical framework, discuss the key physical model ingredients, and explore in detail the cosmic coevolution of galaxies and their metals.  After reviewing some of the basic results, I will show that Illustris broadly reproduces the observed fundamental metallicity relation and argue that this relation alone may allow us to discriminate between bursty and non-bursty feedback models with JWST.

David Rittenhouse Laboratory, A4