Galaxy Formation Group  
 Num. Simulations
 Semi-Analytic Gal. Form. 
 Large Surveys 
 Collab. Networks 
Cosmology People NOTE: Some people are
listed in more than one group

Welcome to the Galaxy Formation Group

Galaxy formation is one of the most important areas of research in cosmology, and our group is very active in this field. We study galaxy formation using a variety of theoretical and observational techniques, ranging from direct numerical simulations over semi-analytic models of galaxy formation to detailed analysis of large observational surveys. We are also actively participating in a number of large international collaborations that focus on the physics of galaxy formation. Click on the links below to reach individual project pages:

  Numerical Simulations

link VIRGO: Cosmological N-Body Simulations
The VIRGO Consortium is an international grouping of scientists carrying out supercomputer simulations of the formation of galaxies, galaxy clusters, large-scale structure, and of the evolution of the intergalactic medium. Projects of VIRGO include:
-The Millennium Simulation Project
-The Hubble Volume Project
-High-resolution dark matter simulations
-Hydrodynamic simulations of structure formation
-Cluster and galaxy resimulation
-Topology of the Universe
-Large scale motions of superclusters and the Sunyaev-Zel'dovich effect
-Ray-tracing simulations of gravitational lensing
-Simulations including Gas
(many pages include data download tables)


link Data Visualization
This page offers a selection of data visualization products from our numerical simulations, including images and digital movies. (image and movie files)




link GADGET: Galaxies with Dark matter and Gas intEracT
GADGET is a freely available code for cosmological N-body/SPH simulations on serial workstations, or on massively parallel computers with distributed memory. The parallel version of GADGET uses an explicit communication model that is implemented with the standardized MPI communication interface...
(includes data download table)


Semi-Analytic Galaxy Formation

link Millennium Simulation
The Millennium Simulation is the largest cosmological N-body simulation ever carried out and has been used to construct sophisticated semi-analytic models of galaxy information that cover the complete galaxy population in a representative piece of the Universe down to luminosities substantially below L*.
(includes data download table)


link Simple and fast galaxy formation model
This approach is using the complex structure of merger-trees from the Millennium simulation, combined with simple schematic recipes for the formation and evolution of galaxies. The model produces galaxies which fit various observational constraints.


link GIF
Scientists involved in the GIF project combined the large high-resolution N-body simulations with semi-analytical models to study formation and evolution of galaxies.
(includes data download table)



link Constrained Realization of the Local Universe
These models simulate the formation and evolution of the neighbouring galaxy population starting from initial conditions with a smoothed linear density field which matches that derived from the IRAS 1.2 Jy galaxy survey.
(includes data download table, images)


Large Surveys

external link SDSS: Sloan Digital Sky Survey
The Sloan Digital Sky Survey is the most ambitious astronomical survey project ever undertaken. The survey will map in detail one-quarter of the entire sky, determining the positions and absolute brightness of more than 100 million celestial objects. SDSS is a joint project of many international institutions including the MPA.



external link ATLAS 3D Survey
The ATLAS 3D Project (Cappellari et al. 2011) combines a multi-wavelength survey of a complete sample of 260 early-type galaxies within the local (42Mpc) volume (1.1610^5 Mpc^3) with numerical simulations and semi-analytic modeling of galaxy formation.




external link GASS
The GALEX Arecibo SDSS Survey (GASS) is an ongoing large targeted survey at Arecibo, home to the world's largest single-dish radio telescope. The observations started on March 19th 2008. GASS is designed to measure the neutral hydrogen content of a representative sample of about 1000 massive, galaxies, uniformly selected from the SDSS spectroscopic and GALEX imaging surveys.



external link COLD GASS
This project builds upon the multi-wavelength data set accumulated by the Galex Arecibo SDSS Survey (GASS) - a survey designed to measure the atomic hydrogen content for an unbiased sample of 1000 massive galaxies with SDSS optical spectra and GALEX UV imaging.




external link GALEX
The Galaxy Evolution Explorer (GALEX) is an orbiting space telescope observing galaxies in ultraviolet light across 10 billion years of cosmic history. A Pegasus rocket launched GALEX into orbit at 8 a.m. EDT on April 28th, 2003. Although originally planned as a 29-month mission, the NASA Senior Review Panel in 2006 recommended that the mission lifetime be extended.



external link WISE
WISE is a NASA-funded Explorer mission that will provide a vast storehouse of knowledge about the solar system, the Milky Way, and the Universe. Among the objects WISE will study are asteroids, the coolest and dimmest stars, and the most luminous galaxies.




external link Bluedisc Project
The Bluedisk project, lead by Guinevere Kauffmann (MPA Garching), has recently started with a WSRT neutral-hydrogen survey of 50 galaxies, which are selected based on their optical and ultraviolet properties as observed with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) and GalaxyEvolution Explorer (GALEX) satellite.



Collaborative Networks

external link European Network (Intergalactic Medium)
The Intergalactic Medium is the repository of the dominant component of ordinary matter in the Universe. This network seeks a unified description of the large-scale distribution, thermal and ionization state, chemical composition, and evolution of the IGM...




link European Network (Galaxy Formation)
It has recently become possible to identify galaxies so distant that they are seen when only a fraction as old as nearby systems. The evolution of the universe can be studied directly through observation of such galaxies, and this has been a major motivation for the new generation of large ground-based telescopes as well as for satellite observatories like the Hubble Space Telescope and ISO...

Comments to: volker@mpa-garching.mpg.detop