EAS Publications Series
Volume 51, 2011Star Formation in the Local Universe – EES2010
|Page(s)||107 - 131|
|Published online||16 November 2011|
C. Charbonnel and T. Montmerle (eds)
EAS Publications Series, 51 (2011) 107–131
Star formation in galaxy interactions and mergers
CEA Saclay, IRFU, SAp, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette, France
This lecture reviews fundamental physical processes on star formation in galaxy interactions and mergers. Interactions and mergers often drive intense starbursts, but the link between interstellar gas physics, large scale interactions, and active star formation is complex and not fully understood yet. We show that two processes can drive starbursts: radial inflows of gas can fuel nuclear starbursts, triggered gas turbulence and fragmentation can drive more extended starbursts in massive star clusters with high fractions of dense gas. Both modes are certainly required to account for the observed properties of starbursting mergers. A particular consequence is that star formation scaling laws are not universal, but vary from quiescent disks to starbursting mergers. High-resolution hydrodynamic simulations are used to illustrate the lectures.
© EAS, EDP Sciences, 2011
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