Wednesday, February 15, 2012
The First Stars and Galaxies
Volker Bromm, University of Texas
How and when did the cosmic dark ages end? I present simulations of the formation of the first stars and galaxies, discuss their feedback on the intergalactic medium, and describe ways to probe their signature with missions such as WMAP and the James Webb Space Telescope. The properties of the first stars are determined by the interplay between cold dark matter and the atomic and molecular physics of hydrogen. I will identify the key processes and outline the major remaining uncertainties.