The dust properties of star-forming galaxies in the first billion years

Elisabete da Cunha

Submitted on 1 November 2022


The Atacama Large Millimetre/Sub-millimetre Array (ALMA) is obtaining the deepest observations of early galaxies ever achieved at (sub-)millimetre wavelengths, and detecting the dust emission of young galaxies in the first billion years of cosmic history, well in the epoch of reionization. Here I review some of the latest results from these observations, with special focus on the REBELS large programme, which targets a sample of 40 star-forming galaxies at z~7. ALMA detects significant amounts of dust in very young galaxies, and this dust might have different properties to dust in lower-redshift galaxies. I describe the evidence for this, and discuss theoretical/modelling efforts to explain the dust properties of these young galaxies. Finally, I describe two additional surprising results to come out of the REBELS survey: (i) a new population of completely dust-obscured galaxies at z~7, and (ii) the prevalence of spatial offsets between the ultraviolet and infrared emission of UV-bright, high-redshift star-forming galaxies.


Comment: 10 pages, 5 figures; invited review to appear in the Proceedings of IAU Symposium 373 - Resolving the rise and fall of star formation in galaxies

Subject: Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies