Timescales of SFR indicators

Timescales of SFR indicators

My REU student showed that the time scales of observational SFR indicators vary depending on the shape of the SFH. ADS link

I advised José Flores Velázquez while he was an undergraduate student at Cal Poly Pomona as part of the CIERA REU at Northwestern during the summer of 2017. In his project, José evaluated how observational tracers of star formation are affected by periods of bursty star formation. He did this by comparing the “true” star formation rate as measured directly from the simulation, when averaged over a period of time, and the star formation rate predicted by typical tracers estimated using mock observations. He then identified which averaging timescales corresponded with the least amount of scatter for each indicator in each domain (bursty vs. time steady) in order to quantify the way un-modeled bursty star formation might alter the interpretation observational measurements. He found that the timescales these indicators were most accurate for were much shorter than the usually quoted values, 15-30 Myr for FUV (typically thought to be ~100 Myr) and 4-5 Myr for Halpha (typically thought to be ~10 Myr).

José continued to work on the project until his death in 2019. He was talented, quick learning, and incredible kindhearted; he made a positive impact on every life he touched. His loss is a blow to the astronomical community, and to those that knew and cared for him.

His work was published at the end of 2020 when I and his other mentors collaborated to finish the project he started

© Alex Gurvich, 2022. All rights reserved.

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