Universiteit Leiden

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Proefschrift

The interplay between stars, gas and dust in faint star-forming galaxies

When observing star-forming galaxies, we are not only seeing stellar light, but we also see how this interacts with galactic gas and dust. This thesis contains studies of the stellar, nebular and dust properties of low mass star-forming galaxies.

Auteur
Paalvast, M.
Datum
18 juni 2019
Links
Thesis in Leiden Repository

When observing star-forming galaxies, we are not only seeing stellar light, but we also see how this interacts with galactic gas and dust. This thesis contains studies of the stellar, nebular and dust properties of low mass star-forming galaxies. We analyse data from the first statistical sample of low mass galaxies with stellar masses down to 10^7 solar masses, and investigate the emission from the stellar populations and their impact on and properties of the ionised surrounding gaseous nebulae, in order to understand the amount of ionising photons that are produced and the fraction of these that can escape from the galaxies. Since the stellar masses in low-mass systems may be stochastically sampled, we predict the influence of this on their nebular emission lies, and in particular on the derivation of their gas metallicity (the abundances of elements heavier than hydrogen and helium in the gas). To interpret observations of galaxies correctly, it is important to know the amount of interstellar dust grains, and its impact on the stellar and nebular light. We therefore finalise this thesis with a new method to derive dust properties in star-forming galaxies.

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