What we do
The richly-structured present-day
Universe with its 'realm of galaxies' must have originated from the simple initial
conditions after the Big Bang. It has become clear that the observed
hierarchical order in our Universe must somehow arise from the interplay
- gravitational instability, driven by yet-undiscovered dark matter
- the expansion of the Universe, currently accelerated by mysterious Dark Energy
- the concentration of ordinary (atomic) matter at the centers of dark
matter halos, where galaxies form
We are working on understanding how this happenend. Numerous fundamental and practical questions are still
unanswered. In the Galaxies and Cosmology (GC) department at the Max
Planck Institute for Astronomy (MPIA), we are
working on figuring out:
- what dark matter and dark energy may be?
- when and how galaxies formed?
- why galaxies have big black holes at their centers, and how those black holes grow?
- how gas gets turned into stars in galaxies?
- how we can diagnose dark matter in and around galaxies, including our own Milky Way?
- what there is in the intergalactic space between galaxies?
In short, we are working on understanding how our overall Universe got