Below I list the main research projects I am currently working on

Magnetic fields and galaxy formation

with Anvar Shukurov, Luke Chamandy, Andrew Fletcher, Carlton Baugh, Russ Taylor

Despite their ubiquity in astrophysical envoriments, magnetic fields had been mostly ignored in models of galaxy formation and evolution. Nevertheless they may play an important role in key processes as star-formation and galactic winds. I had been working on the integration of dynamo models for the amplification of galactic magnetic fields to semi-analytic models of galaxy formation.


The role of parker instabilities in galaxy disks

with Anvar Shukurov, Andrew Fletcher, Graeme Sarson, Paul Bushby, Ann Mao

It is well known that a plasma and a large scale magnetic field subject to a gravitational force and initially under pressure balance is unstable. This particular type of instability, known as 'Parker instability', is amplified by the presence of cosmic rays. We did a set of simulations with varying degrees of idealization to investigate this phenomenon, its observability and consequences. The code used for the simulations is the Pencil code.

Evolution of a section of a galactic disk initially under equilibrium in the absence (left) and in the presence (right) of cosmic rays. 10.6084/m9.figshare.1304527


Cosmic Rays in the multi-phase Interstellar Medium with Dynamo-Generated Magnetic Fields

with Anvar Shukurov, Andrew Fletcher, Andrew Snodin, Graeme Sarson, Frederick Gent, Paul Bushby

We are studying the effects of cosmic rays on the interstellar medium (ISM). The starting point is the model presented in arXiv:1204.3567(ADS) and arXiv:1206.6784(ADS), where small box of the ISM of a Milky-Way-like is simulated (again, using the Pencil code). The original model already included gravity, differential rotation, photoeletric heating, radiative cooling and kinetic and thermal energy injection by supernovae explosions. We are working towards the inclusion of cosmic rays in this model. To do this, we are currently studying subgrid prescription which will allow a greater level of accuracy and control to the cosmic ray modelling.


Exploring the parameter space of semi analytic galaxy formation models

with Richard Bower, Ian Vernon

Semi-analytic models of galaxy formation and evolution contain a very large number of free parameters which codify the strict limitations of our knowlodge about subjects as the star formation and its regulation through feedback processes. Knowing what are the degeneracies in the parameter choices and accurately understanding which parameters are most constrained by which observations can bring us novel insights for the galaxy formation and evolution puzzle. I am currently working on a systematic exporation of the parameter space of the model Galform, using the 'emulator' technique described in arXiv:1004.0711 (ADS).