Because of the finite travel time of light, we are able to look back into the history of galaxy-building in the universe by looking at distant objects. At present, we are still searching for the earliest, tiny galaxies that formed in the pristine early universe and brought an end to the cosmic Dark Ages. Around 12 billion years ago, these seed galaxies turned into active, distorted large galaxies that formed new stars at a rate of 100 Suns per year. Since that time, the typical large galaxy has become a much calmer, more quiescent system, like the Milky Way, which forms only the equivalent of about one Sun per year. I will describe how we use cutting-edge telescopes to piece together the dramatic changes that have shaped galaxies in both the recent and distant cosmological past. I will also talk about the telescopes of the future that will approach these problems in new and exciting ways.
Also featuring Chris Butler's presentation on "What's Up?" in the current evening sky.
Pre-meeting slide show (~9 MB)
Club Announcemnets (~1 MB)