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Modelling Dust Processing and Evolution in Extreme Environments as seen by Herschel Space Observatory

Abstract : The main goal of my PhD study is to understand the dust processing that occurs during the mixing between the galactic interstellar medium and the intracluster medium. This process is of particular interest in violent phenomena such as galaxy-galaxy interactions or the "Ram Pressure Stripping'' due to the infalling of a galaxy towards the cluster centre.Initially, I focus my attention to the problem of dust destruction and heating processes, re-visiting the available models in literature. I particularly stress on the cases of extreme environments such as a hot coronal-type gas (e.g., IGM, ICM, HIM) and supernova-generated interstellar shocks. Under these conditions small grains are destroyed on short timescales and large grains are heated by the collisions with fast electrons making the dust spectral energy distribution very different from what observed in the diffuse ISM.In order to test our models I apply them to the case of an interacting galaxy, NGC 4438. Herschel data of this galaxy indicates the presence of dust with a higher-than-expected temperature.With a multi-wavelength analysis on a pixel-by-pixel basis we show that this hot dust seems to be embedded in a hot ionised gas therefore undergoing both collisional heating and small grain destruction.Furthermore, I focus on the long-standing conundrum about the dust destruction and dust formation timescales in the Milky Way. Based on the destruction efficiency in interstellar shocks, previous estimates led to a dust lifetime shorter than the typical timescale for dust formation in AGB stars. Using a recent dust model and an updated dust processing model we re-evaluate the dust lifetime in our Galaxy. Finally, I turn my attention to the phenomenon of "Ram Pressure Stripping''. The galaxy ESO 137-001 represents one of the best cases to study this effect. Its long H2 tail embedded in a hot and ionised tail raises questions about its possible stripping from the galaxy or formation downstream in the tail. Based on recent hydrodynamical numerical simulations, I show that the formation of H2 molecules on the surface of dust grains in the tail is a viable scenario.
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  • HAL Id : tel-01126887, version 1




Marco Bocchio. Modelling Dust Processing and Evolution in Extreme Environments as seen by Herschel Space Observatory. Galactic Astrophysics [astro-ph.GA]. Université Paris Sud - Paris XI, 2014. English. ⟨NNT : 2014PA112184⟩. ⟨tel-01126887⟩



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