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What do we know about dust at high redshifts?

Physics/Astro Auditorium

Irene Shivaei (University of Arizona)

November 7 @ 4:00 PM - 5:00 PM

One of the most mysterious components of galaxies is dust. Dust not only plays an important role in the physics and chemistry of the ISM, but also shapes our views of galaxies by absorbing and scattering UV and optical light and re-emitting it in longer IR wavelengths. Despite its importance, dust is not well characterized beyond the Milky Way and a few other well-studied local galaxies. I will talk about what we know about dust and obscured star formation in galaxies at redshift of z~2, the peak epoch of cosmic star formation activity, using our current data and facilities, such as ALMA and Keck, and the prospects with the future JWST. JWST/MIRI will be revolutionary in advancing our knowledge about the dust-obscured star formation in typical high-redshift galaxies, owing to its significantly higher sensitivity and resolution compared to those of its predecessors. On the other hand, the unprecedented power of ALMA gives us the opportunity to probe the cold dust content of galaxies at z>1, and the state-of-the-art optical and near-IR instruments on 10-m class telescopes add important pieces of information about the UV-optical dust attenuation at high redshifts. The synergies among these powerful facilities will give us a more complete picture of the dust content of galaxies during the peak epoch of star formation activity in the universe.