Please contact Dr Van Loo directly if you are interested in this projects.
Project 1: Dust and gas filaments in the Interstellar Medium
Herschel observations have revealed that every interstellar giant molecular cloud contains a rich network of filaments (e.g. André et al. 2010 A&A 518 L102. There is also a clear correlation between the magnetic field orientations and the density gradients of the filaments (e.g. Soler et al. 2013 ApJ 774 128). However, the origin of the filaments remains a subject of debate, although it is likely due to magnetohydrodynamical (MHD) flows interacting with gravity. Through a set of simulations, the proposed work will address the following questions: 1) how does ambipolardiffusion affect filament formation and is it responsible for setting a characteristic filament width; 2) why does that width depend on tracer?; 3) how do the magnetic field and density structures correlate at different length scales and for different filament masses?