A VLT-SINFONI study of local Luminous and Ultraluminous infrared galaxies

Javier Piqueras López

Astrophysics Department

Year 2014

Estudio de galaxias luminosas y ultraluminosas en el infrarrojo con VTL-SINFONI

The importance of Luminous (LIRGs) and Ultraluminous (ULIRGs) infrared galaxies in the context of galaxy evolution has been clearly established since their discovery in the early 70’s. This new class of “infrared galaxies” is characterised by emitting more energy in the mid- and far-infrared than at all other wavelengths combined (see the review of Sanders & Mirabel 1996). Despite (U)LIRGs are not very common in the local Universe, they happen to be the most luminous galaxies locally. They have been detected in large quantities at high-z in deep mid- and far-infrared surveys, where they dominate the energy density of the Universe beyond z ∼ 1.5 (e.g. Le Floc’h et al. 2005, Pérez-González et al. 2005, Lonsdale et al. 2006, Nardini et al. 2008, Sargent et al. 2012, Magnelli et al. 2013).

(U)LIRGs are valuable candidates to study extreme cases of compact star- formation and coeval active galactic nuclei (AGN), as well as their impact on the interstelar medium in terms of feedback processes. Taking advantage of the high spatial resolution and S/N that can be achieved in local samples, the study of nearby (U)LIRGs provides with a unique opportunity to perform detailed analysis of these physical processes, and is a fundamental piece to understand their more distant counterparts.

This thesis project is part of a larger program, that covers the whole range of LIRG and ULIRG luminosities and the different morphologies observed, and presents, for the first time, a near-IR study of local LIRGs and ULIRGs based on seeing-limited VLT-SINFONI observations. In addition, we present the study of the spatially resolved kinematics of the central regions of the nearby galaxy M83, focusing on the role of supernovae in shaping the gas kinematics at scales of tens of parsecs. […]

Useful information

Supervisors: Luis Colina Robledo (CAB), Santiago Arribas Mocoroa (CAB)
University: Universidad Complutense de Madrid, Facultad de Ciencias Físicas; Centro de Astrobiología
Reading date: 23/05/2014

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