Letters of Intent received in 2022

LoI 2024-2167
Stellar populations in the Milky Way and beyond

Date: 4 November 2024 to 8 November 2024
Category: Non-GA Symposium
Location: Rio de Janeiro-São Paulo coastline, Brazil
Contact: Jorge Meléndez (jorge.melendez@iag.usp.br)
Coordinating division: Division H Interstellar Matter and Local Universe
Other divisions: Division G Stars and Stellar Physics
Division J Galaxies and Cosmology
Co-Chairs of SOC: Jorge Meléndez (Universidade de São Paulo)
Cristina Chiappini (Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam)
Co-Chairs of LOC: Bruno Castilho (Laboratório Nacional de Astrofísica)
Paula Coelho (Universidade de São Paulo)



1) Methods for the determination of atmospheric stellar parameters, chemical compositions, and key stellar properties such as mass and age.
2) The Galactic halo populations: chemical composition of in-situ and accreted metal-poor stars; globular clusters .
3) The Galactic disk populations and their chemodynamical properties from abundance and kinematical studies; open clusters; star-forming regions.
4) The populations of the inner Galaxy: bulge, halo, inner disk, bar and mixed populations from spectroscopic and photometric surveys; bulge stellar clusters.
5) Cosmological simulations of stellar populations of the Milky Way and other galaxies.
6) Gaia DR4, spectroscopic and photometric surveys and new instrumentation for the study of stellar populations.
7) Resolved extragalactic stellar populations: The Magellanic Clouds, dwarf galaxies, and other nearby galaxies.
8) Unresolved extragalactic stellar populations.
9) Spectral libraries for population synthesis.
10) New astronomical instruments in development that will impact on stellar populations studies.



How galaxies form is one of the most fundamental questions in modern astrophysics. As the only galaxy for which kinematics and chemical compositions can be obtained for millions of resolved stars, the Milky Way can provide fundamental clues to this question. This symposium will honor the life and work of Beatriz Barbuy, who has made key contributions to the study of stellar populations in the Milky Way and beyond.

The field is at a critical juncture, with the convergence of three new developments, all related to the nature of stellar populations in galaxies: (i) the emergence of a huge data set of detailed chemistry, ages, and precision kinematics for millions of stars supplied by the Gaia satellite and various ground-based spectroscopic surveys. This has also been enabled by groundbreaking developments in various fronts, including the calculation of more realistic model atmospheres, more accurate and complete atomic and molecular line data over an increasingly wider baseline, NLTE modelling of line formation, and stellar ages based on asteroseismology and chemical clocks, and last, but not least, the development of sophisticated methods for automatic spectral analysis; (ii) the launching and successful operation of JWST, which is delivering snapshots of various stages of galaxy evolution as it obtains high quality data for galaxies over a wide range of redshifts, from structure and kinematics of the early disk galaxies at high redshift to chemical compositions and kinematics of resolved stars in the Andromeda galaxy; and (iii) the advent of a new generation of cosmological numerical simulations yielding realistic predictions of the detailed properties of Milky Way-like galaxies, bridging observations of Milky Way stellar populations with those of their counterparts in Milky Way-like galaxies in a range of redshifts. The time is ripe for a critical look at how these various pieces of the puzzle can be put together to make significant progress in our understanding of both the history of the Milky Way and the physics of galaxy formation. This symposium will assemble world experts in all these areas in order to build a holistic picture of the state of the art in the field of galaxy formation, with an eye towards the design of new instruments to pursue cutting edge experiments with the top observational facilities available to the community in the next decade.

SOC Members:
Jorge Meléndez, Universidade de São Paulo, Chair (Brazil)
Cristina Chiappini, Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam, Co-Chair (Germany)
Alan Alves-Brito, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
Aruna Goswami, Indian Institute of Astrophysics (India)
Bruno Dias, Universidad de Tarapacá (Chile)
Chris Sneden, University of Texas at Austin (USA)
Gary Da Costa, Australian National University (Australia)
Gražina Tautvaišienė, Vilnius University (Lithuania)
Katia Cunha, Steward Observatory, University of Arizona (USA)
Kim Venn, University of Victoria (Canada)
Livia Origlia, INAF - Osservatorio di Astrofisica e Scienza dello Spazio (Italy)
Lucimara P. Martins, Núcleo de Astrofísica Teórica - UNICID (Brazil)
Marina Trevisan, Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil)
Monique Spite, Observatoire de Paris-Meudon (France)
Thomas Bensby, Lund Observatory (Sweden)
Sara Lucatello, INAF - Osservatorio Astronomico di Padova (Italy)

Jorge Meléndez, Cristina Chiappini, Ricardo Schiavon, Marina Trevisan

VENUE: The Symposium is being planned on a beach town in the Rio de Janeiro-São Paulo (Brazil) coastline, with easy access from major airports in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo. Local organization will provide charter buses to transport participants from airports to the venue.