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Testing Galaxy Formation Models at the Small Scales By Dr. Simona Vegetti

Her lecture notes:The distribution of masses of dwarf satellite galaxies that are observed around Local Group galaxies differs substantially from simulations based on cold dark matter--the simulations predict many more dwarf galaxies than are seen. The Local Group, however, may be anomalous in this
regard. The lack of visible stars and gas severely limits the possibility of detecting these satellites in other galaxies. I will show how gravitational lensing can address this issue in a unique way by detecting low-mass satellites at cosmological distances independently of their luminosity. I will present the discovery of two small-mass dark satellites in very distant galaxies and discuss their implication for galaxy formation models.

 

Simona Vegetti completed her Ph.D. at the Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, the University of Groningen, The Netherlands. While there, she worked with Prof. Leon Koopmans on a new project to detect mass substructure in gravitational lens galaxies.

Before moving to The Netherlands, Vegetti studied at the University of Turin where she received her M.A. in Astrophysics and her B.S. in Physics. Her M.A. thesis on the morphological and kinematical properties of galaxies in the outer region of clusters was supervised by Prof. Antonaldo Diaferio. Her B.S. thesis on the photometric properties of AGB stars in the near-infrared wavelength was supervised by Prof. Giovanni Silvestro.

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