Extragalactic Spectroscopic Surveys: Past, Present and Future of Galaxy Evolution (GALSPEC2021)
ESO Headquarters, Santiago, Chile, April 12 - 16, 2021
VIMOS, the VIsible Multi-Object Spectrograph, was decommissioned in March 2018. After 15 years of operations, VIMOS has amassed over 9700 hours of science data, mostly devoted to spectroscopic surveys of galaxies across cosmic time. This also marked the completion of the two last VIMOS Public Surveys: VANDELS and LEGA-C. To commemorate this milestone, we are celebrating a 5-day workshop to review past and current spectroscopic surveys on galaxy evolution (both with ESO and non-ESO instruments), as well as to explore future surveys that will be soon enabled by new MOS and IFU facilities.
Our understanding of galaxy evolution has changed dramatically in the last decade thanks to large MOS/IFU surveys. These vast datasets have brought into focus the complex interplay between the ages, metallicities and kinematics of galaxies and their mass, size, structure, nuclear activity and environment. Still, there are many open questions (see below) which new instruments will tackle in several fronts. On one hand, MOS/IFU instruments in 30m class telescopes will allow us to peer into the high-z universe with similar depth and spatial resolution as we currently do at lower redshifts. On the other hand, new large-multiplexing facilities like 4MOST and MOONS will dramatically boost the size of galaxy samples.
Structure of the workshop
Our workshop will bring together the low- and high-z extragalactic communities to review where we stand and prepare for the challenges ahead. Regular talks will be intertwined with invited "bridge talks" given jointly by researchers working on low- and high-z, or by modelers and observers.
The program is structured around four key topics:
- Star formation and stellar populations What properties of galaxies drive their overall star formation activity? How do small-scale (<kpc) structures and star-formation physics affect galaxy-wide properties, and vice versa? How does the spatial distribution of star formation within galaxies change with time? Is the global and local evolution of the stellar mass and metallicity consistent with the evolution of the star formation activity? Can we use the present-day spatial distribution of stellar populations in nearby galaxies to reconstruct their past evolution?
- Stellar and gas kinematics How does angular momentum govern galaxy morphology and the onset of the Hubble sequence? Do the stellar and gaseous rotation curves of distant galaxies differ from those of nearby ones? How do scaling laws such as the Tully-Fisher or Faber-Jackson laws evolve with time? How does this constrain our understanding of dark matter and gravity?
- The environment of galaxies What can the spatial and kinematic distribution of satellites around galaxies tell us about the assembly of said host galaxies? How do mechanisms like harassment, starvation or ram pressure stripping affect galaxies in clusters? How much of this evolution takes place already inside the clusters or via preprocessing before falling into the clusters?
- The road ahead Presentations about recent and upcoming instruments, both at ESO and other observatories (4MOST, MOONS, MEGARA, LAMOST, MOSAIC, etc), as well as synergies with ALMA, JWST, Euclid and LSST.
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