Last modified: Mon Feb 21 13:00:44 CET 2011

Homepage Carsten Kramer

Research Projects:
  • The cold, dense interstellar medium in nearby spiral galaxies. At present, we are studying M33, M51, M83, NGC253, Circinus, NGC4945. This is also preparatory work for the Herschel key projects HERMES (PI: C.Kramer), HERCULES (PI: P.v.d.Werf), and HEXGAL (PI: R.Guesten).

  • Galactic photon dominated regions (PDRs), i.e. the physical properties of the transition layers on the surface of molecular clouds. The emission of various chemical tracers of the physical conditions is compared with physical models of PDRs. This way, we are studying the Galactic massive star forming regions Carina, NGC3603, Rosette, DR21, Cepheus B. This is also preparatory work for a guaranteed time key project on the Warm and Dense ISM with Herschel (WADI, PI: V.Ossenkopf).
For the galactic and extragalactic research, the IRAM observatories are used, but also JCMT, APEX, NANTEN2, Mopra, ISO.
Some of the key questions are to determine the energy balance of the interstellar medium as a function of galactic environment. Measure the ratio of dust continuum cooling vs. gas cooling, and the relative importance of the various gas coolans and relevant heating processes ? Combine FIR line data with existing HI data to study the formation of molecular clouds from the diffuse atomic medium. To determine the details of the evolution from atomic to molecular gas and ultimately star formation itself.