Place: 4421 Sterling Hall, Coffee and Cookies 3:30 PM, Talk at 3:45 PM
Speaker: Mauro Giavalisco, University of Massachusetts
Abstract: There is convincing evidence that massive galaxies (i.e. M~M*) undergo profound structural and morphological transformations as their star formation activity comes to a halt and they enter a phase of passive evolution. We do not yet understand which physical mechanism, or mechanisms, among a number of plausible ones, are responsible for the quenching. Nor do we understand what drives the morphological transformations. In this talk I will review some recent observations of both structural and morphological transformations and of quenching in galaxies at redshift 1<z<2.5, namely at the peak of the cosmic star formation activity, and discuss possible interpretations for the underlying physics of both. I will also present very recent observations that are informing us on the joint evolution of dark and baryon matter in galaxies and point to a possible common origin for both quenching and structural transformations. I will conclude by discussing some of the interpretations and by offering my speculations.