Galaxies are central to our understanding of the universe. They trace
the geometry of space-time and give birth to stars and planets. Galaxy
formation theory accurately describes the gravitational amplification of
structure in the matter distribution over cosmic time. Unfortunately, most
of the (dark) mass density in the universe is not normal baryonic
so the theory does not directly predict the observable feature of galaxies --
starlight. Research in Crystal Martin's research focuses on the astrophysics
formation and evolution, trying to understand in detail why the star formation
rate varies widely among galaxies. Central to this work is the idea of
feedback from supernova explosions, which inject energy, momentum, and
heavy elements into the surrounding interstellar gas. The new conditions
dictate whether the gas clouds form another generation of stars. Observations
demonstrate that supersonic shock waves, driven by the combined energy
of many supernova explosions, sweep interstellar gas into large shells.
.... Sorry, this page is under construction; contact Professor Martin for more information about research.....