The Local Group: Assembly and Evolution

Mon 31 Aug 2020
Thu 3 Sep 2020

Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI)
3700 San Martin Drive
Baltimore, MD 21218

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2020 Spring Symposium banner

The Space Telescope Science Institute is excited to host the 2020 STScI Spring Symposium, “The Local Group: Assembly and Evolution.” The symposium will be held at the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, MD, USA, from August 31 - September 3, 2020. The symposium will include invited reviews, regular/short contributed talks, and posters selected from submissions.

Scientific Rationale:

The hierarchical nature of cosmological structure formation can be studied most directly, and in greatest detail, in the very nearby Universe. The Local Group is filled with substructures, some bound and some in various stages of disruption. These objects carry the fossil record of the Local Group's assembly history and represent a link between large-scale structures and small-scale galaxy formation. The Local Group is therefore a unique and powerful laboratory for testing diverse aspects of galaxy formation and cosmological theories.

Thanks to both observational and theoretical advances, our understanding of the assembly and evolution of the Local Group has improved significantly in the last decade. Wide-field photometric/astrometric surveys such as Pan-STARRS, DES, SDSS, and Gaia, as well as targeted imaging and proper motions from HST, continue to provide unprecedented views of the stellar systems in the Local Group. Spectroscopic surveys, such as APOGEE, now allow chemical tagging of stars associated with distinct structural components. Facilities arising in the near future, such as JWST, WFIRST, and LSST, will drive another leap forward.  At the same time, computing resources have become powerful enough to simulate even the faintest known galaxies across the age of the Universe and to investigate observable imprints of the nature of dark matter in these objects.

In this symposium, we will bring together researchers studying the assembly and evolution of the Local Group and its components, so that we may review and discuss the current status of the field and future opportunities. Some of the key questions we will address throughout this meeting are:

  1. How did the Milky Way system assemble and form?
  2. How similar/different are the Milky Way and M31 systems?
  3. What mechanisms drive the formation and evolution of the Local Group and its constituent galaxies?
  4. What can we learn about the Local Group by studying other groups and clusters in the local Universe?

Please use the registration link to register for the 2020 Spring Symposium. Please note that you are not registered for the symposium until payment of the registration fee has been completed.

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Important Dates:
May 1 Deadline to confirm or cancel current registration
July 31 Registration ends

Date Event Time
Monday, August 31, 2020 Registration 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Monday, August 31, 2020 Workshop 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Tuesday, September 1, 2020 Workshop 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Wednesday, September 2, 2020 Workshop 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Thursday, September 3, 2020 Workshop 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.