Collaborative Research: Changes in Molecular Gas and Galaxy Properties Over Time in the Era of Integral Field Unit Surveys

Time Frame


Total Funding to Date



  • Matthew Turk

Changes of a galaxy's properties over time are driven by the quantity of its cold gas, the raw material from which stars form. Thus, understanding the properties of a galaxy's cold gas component will tell us both how the star formation process changes over time and how this affects galaxies. Using a recently completed survey of carbon monoxide gas in a sample of nearby galaxies, the project will (1) measure how the molecular gas is used up, in order to test how star formation in the galaxies is affected; (2) map the locations of this gas in the galaxies to determine if/how these locations affect star formation; and (3) measure how the gas is flowing into and out of the galaxies to determine how this affects structural changes in the galaxies over time. In particular, some questions that can be answered from this research include: What factors affect the conversion of molecular gas into stars? How is molecular gas structured? How do galaxies grow and age? This proposal will provide insight into the process of galaxy formation and our understanding of these objects.



  • Tony Wong (PI), Astronomy

Funding Agencies

  • National Science Foundation, 2016 – $267,664.00