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Astro & GW Colloquium

ATLASGAL — dense gas structure of the inner Galaxy

Speaker: Dr James Urquhart (University of Kent)
Date: Wednesday 9 January 2019
Time: 14:00
Venue: Queens Buildings N/3.28

Massive stars have a profound impact on their environment. They shape the interstellar medium (ISM) with their strong stellar winds and ionizing radiation, and play a role in regulating star (and planet) formation, and ultimately driving the chemical and physical evolution of their host galaxies. However, despite their importance, our understanding of the initial conditions required for massive star formation and the processes involved in the early evolution are still poorly understood. Our ability to make significant progress in this field has been dramatically enhanced in recent years with the completion of a large number of Galactic plane surveys that cover the whole wavelength range from the near-infrared to the radio (e.g., UKIDSS, GLIMPSE, HIGAL, CORNISH). One such survey is the APEX Telescope Large Area Survey of the Galaxy (ATLASGAL), which provides a large and systematic inventory of massive, dense clumps and includes representative samples of all of the earliest embedded stages of high-mass star formation. In the talk I will give an overview of this survey and our efforts to map the distribution of massive star forming regions across the Galaxy. We use these results to investigate the influence of different environments and Galactic location on the star-formation efficient and the role of the spiral arms.