The Most Massive Galaxies in 3D

Tuesday, 25 October, 2016 - 15:00 to 16:00

We think that galaxies form in a cosmological game of lego, where smaller galaxies merge to form bigger galaxies again and again over the history of the Universe.  The most massive galaxies are therefore the best test of our understanding of this process.  While the Milky Way galaxy weighs around 50 billion times our Sun, it is not the most massive galaxy out there.  I study galaxies several tens of times more massive, using integral field spectrographs that give a 3-dimensional picture of galaxies.  I will present our current understanding of the history of these unique galaxies from 3D observations (no special glasses required).