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15 mars 2019 Tout le mois


Sebastian Kamann (Liverpool John Moores University) - Dynamical clues to the formation of star clusters

Vendredi 15 mars 11:00-12:00

The star cluster population of the Milky Way provides a unique window to study the formation history of our Galaxy. The conditions of the epochs when the Milky Way built up most of its stellar mass are preserved in the star clusters we observe to date. However, the physics governing the formation of star clusters are still not entirely understood. For example, ancient globular clusters show subtle differences in the chemical compositions of their stars which appear to be absent in the clusters forming today. Does this suggest that cluster formation varies with mass or cosmic age ? In my presentation, I want to show how we can use the stellar dynamics of the clusters to answer such questions. Thanks to satellites such as Hubble or Gaia and powerful spectrographs we can nowadays study the motions of representative samples of stars in clusters of all ages. Using data from the MUSE spectrograph, we could already show that rotation played a crucial role in the formation of globular clusters and that they harbour larger populations of black holes than previously thought. We are further using the data to search for differences in the kinematics of their stellar populations. If detected, such differences put stringent constraints on the mechanisms that led to the formation of multiple populations in globular clusters.

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