Tony Wong’s Research Group
Tony Wong is an associate professor in the Department of Astronomy at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Previously he held research positions at the Australia Telescope National Facility and the University of New South Wales. He primarily studies the interstellar medium (ISM) in nearby galaxies and its relation to star formation.
- The global structure of the ISM in disk galaxies. We are investigating the radial and vertical profiles of gas, stars, and star formation in a number of nearby spiral galaxies, including the prototypical edge-on galaxy NGC 891. These profiles can shed light on the star formation law, the origin of exponential and “thick” disks, and the conditions for the formation of H2. External collaborators include Alberto Bolatto (U. Maryland), Adam Leroy (NRAO), and Erik Rosolowsky (UBC).
Group members: Kijeong Yim, David Rebolledo, Rui Xue
- Studies of the ISM in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Making use of data from Australian radio facilities, as well as space-based UV, optical, and IR telescopes, we have been investigating several overlapping issues, including the relationship between atomic and molecular gas, the internal structure of star-forming molecular clouds, and the origin of the radio/far-infrared correlation. External collaborators include Prof. Yasuo Fukui and his group at Nagoya University, Dr. Juergen Ott (NRAO) and Ph.D. candidate Annie Hughes (Swinburne U.). Local collaborators at UIUC include You-hua Chu, Robert Gruendl, Leslie Looney, and Jonathan Seale.
Group members: Dan Welty, Rui Xue
- Molecular line mapping of GMCs in the Galaxy. Using the Mopra telescope, we have been obtaining fully sampled maps of southern giant molecular clouds (GMCs) in CO, 13CO, and C18O. These maps provide a “deeper” view of cloud structure than CO maps alone, and can be used to investigate current issues in molecular cloud evolution, including the role of turbulence.
- The ISM in Edge-on Galaxies. Graduate student Kijeong Yim is examining a sample of edge-on spirals with CO, HI, and Spitzer imaging to study the structure of disks and its relation to star formation. We are working to expand this sample in collaboration with Richard Rand (UNM) and others.
- Connecting HI and CO line profiles and Tully-Fisher relations. Graduate student David Rebolledo is examining how gas distributions and kinematics affect integrated HI and CO line profiles, with an eye towards interpreting the integrated spectra of distant galaxies.
- MAGMA, the Magellanic Mopra Assessment. We are conducting a CO survey of the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds that achieves the best available angular resolution on clouds detected by the NANTEN survey. Observations are being conducted with the Mopra telescope in Australia.
- BIMA Survey of Nearby Galaxies CO Data Archive (BIMA SONG CODA). We are re-processing the original visibility data to yield additional and improved legacy data products for the community.
- CARMA Survey Towards Infrared-bright Nearby Galaxies (CARMA STING). We are conducting a new extragalactic survey for CARMA, which is based on IR-luminous galaxies from the IRAS Revised Bright Galaxy Sample with a wealth of ancillary data (including VLA, SDSS, and Spitzer).