University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Calendar

Friday, February 20th 2015
Speaker: Sally Oey, University of Michigan
Subject: The fate of ionizing radiation from massive stars in star-forming galaxies

The fate of ionizing radiation from massive stars has fundamental consequences on scales ranging from the physics of circumstellar disks to the ionization state of the entire universe. On galactic scales, the radiative feedback from massive stars is a major driver for the energetics and phase balance of the interstellar medium in star-forming galaxies. While even starburst galaxies appear to be largely optically thick in the Lyman continuum, ionization-parameter mapping shows that significant populations of HII regions within galaxies are optically thin, powering the diffuse, warm ionized medium. I will discuss our multi-faceted work to clarify our understanding of radiative feedback and diagnostics for probing LyC optical depth in star-forming galaxies from the Magellanic Clouds to starbursts.

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