A new paper about spiral galaxies in Galaxy Zoo

I’m happy to announce that my first Galaxy Zoo paper has been published! You may be aware that I recently posted about spiral galaxies in Galaxy Zoo (the blog post can be found here). The first results from these studies have now made it to publication, where we discuss a new method for removing bias in galaxy classifications, as well as comparing the properties of different spiral galaxies.

spirals

Some example 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5+ armed spiral galaxies classified in Galaxy Zoo.

As discussed in my earlier blog post, spiral galaxies are some of the most interesting galaxies in the local Universe. However, studies of these objects have been limited, due to the fact that galaxies need to be visually classified. It is therefore thanks to all of the volunteers in Galaxy Zoo that a paper like this can be published, where we have thousands of spiral galaxies to compare. Thanks to these classifications, we have been able to find some interesting preliminary results: we find that many-armed spiral galaxies are bluer in colour than two-armed spiral galaxies. This suggests that many-armed spirals are sites of significantly enhanced activity in the Universe, where high levels of star formation activity are taking place.

cc1

Colours of spiral galaxies by arm number. Lower u-r  and r-z mean galaxies are bluer in colour (many-armed galaxies show bluer colours).

However, these results are only a hint at what we can achieve in the future. So watch this space and we’ll keep you all informed about any developments in our work on spiral galaxies!

If you are interested in reading more, the full article can be found here.

 

About Ross Hart

PhD student at the University of Nottingham

One response to “A new paper about spiral galaxies in Galaxy Zoo”

  1. John Fairweather says :

    Interesting paper, I did read it. Hopefully some of the GZ volunteers will read it as well.

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