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Where is Population II?

  • J. Mould (a1) (a2), F. Bianchini (a3), Duncan A. Forbes (a1) and C. L. Reichardt (a3)

The use of roman numerals for stellar populations represents a classification approach to galaxy formation which is now well behind us. Nevertheless, the concept of a pristine generation of stars, followed by a protogalactic era, and finally the mainstream stellar population is a plausible starting point for testing our physical understanding of early star formation. This will be observationally driven as never before in the coming decade. In this paper, we search out observational tests of an idealised coeval and homogeneous distribution of population II stars. We examine the spatial distribution of quasars, globular clusters, and the integrated free electron density of the intergalactic medium, in order to test the assumption of homogeneity. Any real inhomogeneity implies a population II that is not coeval.

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Publications of the Astronomical Society of Australia
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  • EISSN: 1448-6083
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