Letters of Intent for 2015

LoI 2015-177
Focus Meeting: The Solar Neighborhood


5 August 2015 to 7 August 2015


Honolulu, United States


Jan Palous (palous@ig.cas.cz)

Coordinating division:

Division H Interstellar Matter and Local Universe

Co-Chairs of SOC:

Jan Palous (Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic)
Bruce G. Elmegreen (IBM)

Chair of LOC:




- local gas clouds and turbulence
- local dust clouds
- local star forming regions
- local disk and halo stars
- local spiral arm structure
- local stellar kinematics



The solar neighborhood is the best place to study the detailed properties of individual stars and gas clouds. With the imminent launch of the Gaia spacecraft, we will learn even more about local stellar distributions and motions. The solar neighborhood is rich with interesting objects from quiescent star forming regions such as Taurus and Serpens, to extremely metal poor halo stars that are among the oldest objects in the galaxy. Gould's belt illustrates the connection between star formation on sub-parsec scales and spiral arms on galactic scales. Star positions and velocities have revealed new information about local spiral arms and expanding associations. Gas and dust observations reveal tiny filaments, turbulent dissipation, and shock-heated chemistry in dense and translucent clouds. High resolution observations with ALMA and other new instruments reveal protoplanetary and debris disks around nearby young stars. This conference will bring together observers and theoreticians to discuss the gas and stars within the nearest several hundred parsecs in the disk and the nearest kiloparsec in the halo. We propose a 3-day Focus Meeting on these key properties of the Solar Neighborhood. Only two previous meetings about the solar neighborhood came under the auspices of the IAU: Colloquium 166 on the local bubble in 1997, and Colloquium 81 on the local interstellar medium in 1984.

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