Welcome to the ATLAS3D Project website


Figure 1: This plot summarizes the new paradigm for Early-Type galaxies indicated by the ATLAS3D study of the stellar kinematics. See Sky & Telescope and Physics World for a simple description of our findings and our MNRAS Paper for the full details.

The ATLAS3D Project (Cappellari et al. 2011) combines a multi-wavelength survey of a complete sample of 260 early-type galaxies within the local (42Mpc) volume (1.16×105 Mpc3) with numerical simulations and semi-analytic modeling of galaxy formation. This project aims to quantify the global stellar kinematics and dynamics of a statistically significant sample of objects to characterize the class of early-type galaxies, and relate this to their formation and evolution. Combining the stellar populations diagnostics from the multi-wavelength coverage, the ATLAS3D Project will derive the star formation history probing the mass-assembly epochs and timescales. In addition, the project will characterise the different phases of the interstellar medium linking the kinematics of molecular, atomic and ionised gas with the dynamical structure, star formation and environment of the host galaxies.

The observational part of the project consists of optical integral-field spectroscopy using the SAURON integral-field unit on the William Herschel Telescope (WHT), radio observations with the Westerbork Radio Synthesis Telescope (WRST), millimeter observations with the IRAM 30m telescope and the Combined Array for Research in Millimeter-wave Astronomy (CARMA), together with deep imaging with MegaCam on the Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope (CFHT). All reduced multi-wavelength data are now available to the public (see buttons on the left), providing a unique Legacy Survey.

State-of-the-art numerical simulations will help and support the interpretation of this unique set of data, assessing signatures in the dynamics and stellar populations of the formation and evolution processes of early-type galaxies. An extensive series of high resolution N-body + gas (SPH and/or sticky particles) simulations are being performed, including e.g., star formation and feedback, both for isolated or interacting galaxies, binary and multiple mergers, as well as cosmologically motivated simulations.


Last Modified [14 October 2015]