Back at IRAM 30m…


Hi all. I’m at the IRAM 30m telescope for the third time this year this time measuring the CO content in elliptical galaxies. This follows on from Kevin’s long-standing work of using blue elliptical galaxies to test whether or not AGN (Active Galactic Nuclei) are responsible for dispelling gas and thus putting an end to star formation. Theoretical models suggest that this must be the case and this ongoing project to measure exactly how much CO gas is in such galaxies is aiming to verify this. This is accomplished by measuring how much CO is in elliptical galaxies that show no signs of AGN activity and similar galaxies which do have signs of AGN activity. The theory is that, those galaxies with AGN activity will show low quantities of gas relative to their size.

The weather has been very good so far and we are on schedule here to get measurements for all 30 galaxies we asked for despite only being allocated about 3/4 the requested time! With so many measurements, we should hopefully get the statistical significance we need to confirm the theory.


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6 responses to “Back at IRAM 30m…”

  1. Thomas DiMattia says :

    FINALLY, a blog that has some teeth in it.I live to be of service to the scientific community. My interest is in reading spectrograms. Is there any way I can be of help in this area? A releated question: what can an amateur scientist like myself do, who wants to do more than just galaxy zoo?

  2. Waveney says :


    Come to the forum, there are many projects going on, Voorwerpjes, Irregulars and others. There are many spectra to be looked at.

  3. elizatbeth says :

    Thanks for the update I hope the weather stays nice.

  4. Thomas J says :

    Best of luck guys.

  5. Rick Nowell says :

    Good work! Can you tell us something more about the actual telescope you’re using? I understand it is to observe in the millimetre range, but I don’t no why someone might use this range rather than another.

  6. StargazerGirl says :

    I have been fascinated with spectroscopy every since I learned what it was!! On first glance, I thought that the picture at the top of the blog was an emission spectra, but I couldn’t tell!! I hope you continue to have good “seeing”!

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