AR 17545 (Archival Research)

Sat Jul 20 09:49:02 GMT 2024

Principal Investigator: Jeyhan Kartaltepe
PI Institution: Rochester Institute of Technology
Investigators (xml)

Title: The Role of Galaxy Mergers and Interactions in Fueling Star Formation and Black Hole Activity
Cycle: 31

We propose to use HST-WFC3 IR grism data to construct a sample of spectroscopically confirmed galaxy pairs and advanced stage mergers in the CANDELS fields over the redshift range 0.4 < z < 2.3 and investigate how star formation and morphology depend on a pair's redshift and separation. We will use photometrically identified galaxy pair candidates over this redshift range and with separations from 1-150 kpc and stellar mass ratios spanning the range 1-10 and identify new pairs that are blended in our photometry. Along with this sample of galaxy pairs, we will also use a sample of advanced stage and post-mergers selected from the CANDELS an COSMOS ACS/WFC3 imaging to piece together the entire merger timeline, from first passage, to coalescence, to merger remnant. We will then measure the star formation rate for each galaxy to look for trends along this merger sequence, relative to a control sample of mass- and redshift-matched isolated galaxies. We will address the question of how much enhancement is seen in the star formation rate of a galaxy during a merger and whether this changes as a function of redshift. How much does this enhancement contribute to the overall decline of the cosmic star formation rate density?