The decade of galaxy formation: Pitfalls in the path ahead

Research output: Chapter in Book/Conference paperConference paperpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


At the turn of the decade we arguably move from the era of precision cosmology to the era of galaxy formation. One approach to this problem will be via the construction of comprehensive galaxy samples. In this review I take the opportunity to highlight a number of challenges which must be overcome before we can use such data to construct a robust empirical blueprint of galaxy evolution. The issues briefly highlighted here are: the Hubble tuning fork versus galaxy components, the hierarchy of structure, the accuracy of structural decompositions, galaxy photometry, incompleteness, cosmic variance, photometric versus spectroscopic redshifts, wavelength bias, dust attenuation, and the disconnect with theory. These concerns essentially form one of the key motivations of the GAMA survey which, as one of its goals, will establish a complete comprehensive kpc-resolution 3D multiwavelength (UV-Opt-IR-Radio) database of 250 k galaxy systems to z<0.5.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationHunting for the Dark
Subtitle of host publicationThe Hidden Side of Galaxy Formation - Proceedings of the International Conference
Number of pages12
Publication statusPublished - 23 Aug 2010
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Conference "Hunting for the Dark: The Hidden Side of Galaxy Formation" - Qawra, Malta
Duration: 19 Oct 200923 Oct 2009

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


ConferenceInternational Conference "Hunting for the Dark: The Hidden Side of Galaxy Formation"


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