Fine-tuning galaxies with Herschel and Spitzer

Nov 19, 2012
Fine-tuning galaxies with Herschel and Spitzer
Still image of Interactive Hubble Tuning Fork.

(Phys.org)—Galaxies come in all shapes and sizes: from those with compact fuzzy bulges or central bars to galaxies with winding spiral arms. Astronomer Edwin Hubble classified these different breeds of galaxies by means of a diagram known as the Hubble Tuning Fork.

The shape presents elliptical galaxies along the handle, and two different populations of spiral galaxies on the fork's 'prongs' to differentiate between spiral galaxies with a central bar, and those without.

The diagram also describes the shape of the galaxies. are positioned further along the handle towards the fork depending on how elongated they appear, while spiral galaxies are organised by how tightly wound their arms are.

Of course, there are always exceptions, and a separate class of 'irregular' galaxies conforms to neither group, perhaps as a result of a collision or merging event disrupting their shape.

In this interactive tuning fork diagram, 61 nearby galaxies studied by ESA's Herschel and NASA's Spitzer space telescopes are presented. The galaxies are located 10–100 million light-years from Earth and were surveyed as part of two programmes: the Key Insights on Nearby Galaxies: a Far- with Herschel (Kingfish) and the Spitzer Infrared Survey (Sings).

Rather than stars, the images show dust between them that is gently heated by hot young stars, visible only to heat-seeking such as Herschel and Spitzer.

Each individual image is a three-color composite showing warm dust (blue) detected by Spitzer at 24 microns, and cooler dust traced by Herschel at 100 microns (green) and 250 microns (red).

By clicking on each of the galaxies, more information is provided about their classification, distance, size and location in the sky.

The galaxies were chosen to cover a wide range of characteristics to improve our understanding of the processes linking star formation to the local interstellar environment in the nearby Universe.

Explore further: Cosmic illusion revealed: Gravitational lens magnifies supernova

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User comments : 4

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Tuxford
1 / 5 (8) Nov 19, 2012
Where are the giant ellipticals? They should be off diagram to the right. Spirals grow into giant ellipticals from within. Before you mark me down, read the evidence, and then attempt to muster just a bit of logic, rather than science dogma.

http://phys.org/n...022.html

http://phys.org/n...ync.html

cantdrive85
1 / 5 (7) Nov 19, 2012
Anthony Peratt used computer simulations to create many of the observed formations of galaxies.

http://public.lan...S-II.pdf

There's more here;
http://public.lan...PS-I.pdf
Torbjorn_Larsson_OM
5 / 5 (5) Nov 19, 2012
@ Tuxford: The diagram doesn't conform to current models of galaxy formation pathways what I know of.

And no, bulges aren't what ellipticals are made out of, see the usual simulations of galactic collision and growth on youtube.

@ cantdrive85: Peratt is a plasma physicist, not making astronomical models of galaxy formation out of the known physics, such as the Eris model.

Such EU/PC religion has nothing to do with science except as it is confusing people. Stop trolling/take the crap to your religious blogs depending on if you are inane or insane.
cantdrive85
1 / 5 (5) Nov 19, 2012
Myopic dogma is not part of the scientific method, as such Tor, back to the grill, your customers would like their burgers.

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