Herschel Open-Time Key Projects
at Arcetri

Arcetri scientists participate in three Herschel Open-Time (OT) Key Projects: one Galactic, and two extragalactic which regard populations of galaxies in the Local Universe.
  • Hi-Gal: Herschel Infrared Galactic Plane Survey
    PI: Sergio Molinari (INAF-IFSI, Italy)
    (OAA CoI's: Maite Beltran, Riccardo Cesaroni, Fabrizio Massi, Luca Olmi, Leonardo Testi)

    This project has been granted 343 hours of Herschel time to perform an unbiased survey of the portion of the Galactic plane satisfying the galactic longitude and latitude constraints |l|<60deg and |b|<1deg. This is the same region covered by the GLIMPSE and MIPSGAL surveys with SPITZER. The observations will make use of PACS and SPIRE in parallel mode to image the continuum emission from dust in the wavelength range 70-520 micron. Hi-Gal is mostly focused on the problem of Galactic star formation, although a plethora of evolved stars will be also detected in the survey. The main goals of the project are the following:

    • To determine the distribution of the interstellar medium temperature and the intensity of the interstellar radiation field
    • To measure the physical parameters of cold dust and study the formation of molecular clouds
    • To determine the formation mechanism and early evolution of O-B type stars
    • To relate the local star formation rate and efficiency to the global star formation indicators on the Galactic scale.

    (See Hi-Gal Homepage ).

  • HeViCS - Herschel Virgo Cluster Survey
    PI: Jonathan I. Davies (Cardiff University, UK)
    (OAA CoI's: Simone Bianchi, Edvige Corbelli, Sperello di Serego, Marco Grossi, Carlo Giovanardi, Leslie Hunt)

    HeViCS is a deep imaging program (286 hours) to observe 60 square degrees centered on the Virgo cluster. It will use PACS and SPIRE in parallel mode. Observations will be confusion noise limited in all SPIRE bands. The main goals are:

    • Observation of dust emission from the intra-cluster medium
    • Observations of dust emission from the outer extent of galaxies and from associate gas flows.
    • Study of FIR/submm emission in galaxies to determine the relative distribution of dust and stars, the amount of internal extinction, the dust mass and the relation between IR radiation and star formation in objects of different morphological types.
    • Determination of the FIR/submm luminosity function of galaxies in the cluster, and comparison with field samples from other Herschel GT programmes.
    • Dust emission properties in irregular dwarf galaxies, seen as local templates of high-z objects.

    (See Arcetri HeViCS and HeViCS Homepage ).

  • Key Insights on Nearby Galaxies: a Far-Infrared Survey with Herschel (KINGFISH)
    PI: Robert C. Kennicutt, Jr. (Cambridge University, UK)
    (OAA CoI's: Leslie Hunt)

    The KINGFISH project is an imaging and spectroscopic survey of 61 nearby galaxies (within 30Mpc), chosen to span the full range of integrated properties and local interstellar medium (ISM) environments found in the local Universe. Principal science questions to be addressed by the KINGFISH team include the link between star formation and the ISM, the inventory of dust and cold gas in galaxies, and the cooling of the interstellar medium. The broad goals of KINGFISH are to:

    • Characterize the interstellar media of present-day galaxies
    • Place physical constraints on the heating and cooling of their gaseous and dust components
    • Better understand the physical processes linking star formation to the ISM.

    KINGFISH will also provide the Herschel community with a comprehensive library of far-infrared imaging and spectral line maps of local galaxies and their principal infrared emitting components, all integrated with the extensive multi-wavelength dataset from the Spitzer Infrared Nearby Galaxies Survey (SINGS), the foundation sample for the project.

    (See KINGFISH Homepage).


INAF - Osservatorio Astrofisico di Arcetri

Largo E. Fermi, 5 - 50125 Firenze
Tel. 055 27521 Fax 055 220039