Near-infrared integral-field spectroscopy of violent starburst environments

Richard de Grijs*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Near-infrared (NIR) integral-field spectroscopy (IFS) of violent starburst environments at high spatial (and spectral) resolution has the potential to revolutionise our ideas regarding the local interactions between the newly formed massive stars and the interstellar medium (ISM) of their host galaxies. To illustrate this point, I present NIR IFS analysis of the central starburst region of NGC 1140, obtained with CIRPASS on Gemini-South. While strong [Fe ii ] emission is found throughout the galaxy, higher-order Brackett emission is predominantly associated with the northern starburst region. Based on the spatial distributions of the [Fe ii ] versus Brackett line emission, I conclude that a galaxy-wide starburst was induced several ×107 yr ago, with more recent starburst activity concentrated around the northern starburst region. I look forward and discuss the exciting prospects that IFS at higher spatial (and spectral) resolution will allow us trace (i) the massive outflows ("superwinds") expected to originate in the dense, young massive star clusters commonly found in intense starburst environments, and (ii) their impact on the galaxy's ISM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)495-500
Number of pages6
JournalNew Astronomy Reviews
Issue number10-12
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • galaxies: evolution
  • galaxies: starburst
  • infrared: galaxies


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