Institute of Astronomy

The evolution of starburst galaxies

SpeakerTalk DateTalk Series
Vivienne Wild (Edinburgh IfA)20 January 2011Institute of Astronomy Colloquia


Massive bursts of star formation represent a transient, and possibly infrequent phase in the life of galaxies, but the disruption caused has implications for the birth of the Hubble sequence and the star formation history of the Universe. I will show how complete samples of galaxies from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey at low redshift, and the Vimos VLT Deep Survey at z~1, can be used to study the evolution of starbursts into the post-starburst phase. In particular I will focus on the rate of decline of star formation, the switching on of Black Hole accretion, and the potential contribution of major mergers to the birth and growth of elliptical galaxies.