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Molecules, magnetic fields and Intermittency in coSmic Turbulence – Following the energy trail.

Objective

The discovery of molecules in the early universe is a challenging providence. Molecules unveil the truly cold universe in which stars form and their rich versatility provides unique diagnostics to unravel the ”relative importance of purely gravitational effects and gas dynamical effects involving dissipation and radiative cooling”, recognized 40 years ago by White and Rees to be a central issue in theories of galaxy formation. Molecules also reveal that cosmic turbulence is far less dissipative than predicted by cosmological simulations, with a broad equipartition in a vast variety of media between the thermal energy of the hottest phases and the turbulent energy of the coldest. Our project focuses on the physics of turbulent dissipation, and its link to the emergence of molecules, in the magnetized compressible medium where gravitational instability develops to form stars and seed galaxies in the early universe. It builds on a fundamental property of turbulence, its space-time intermittency: dissipation occurs in bursts. Our team will foster strong interactions between three main research axes: (1) observations of the chemical and thermal markers of turbulent dissipation in the high-redshift and local universe, (2) statistical analyses of the magnetic and velocity fields in samples of unprecedented size and sensitivity to study the non-Gaussian signatures of turbulent dissipation, and (3) numerical experiments dedicated to (a) the space-time structures of turbulent dissipation and the formation of molecules in their wake, and (b) the split of the energy trails between hot/thermal and cold/turbulent phases. This project will benefit from the prodigious capabilities of the ALMA and NOEMA interferometers, the launch of the JWST in 2018, and the Planck satellite data on polarized Galactic foregrounds. The ENS Physics Department, with its strong theoretical and experimental expertise on turbulence, is an ideal place to house such a project.

Host institution

ECOLE NORMALE SUPERIEURE
Net EU contribution
€ 1 918 750,00
Address
45, Rue D'ulm
75230 Paris Cedex 05
France

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Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Non-EU contribution
€ 0,00

Beneficiaries (3)

ECOLE NORMALE SUPERIEURE
France
Net EU contribution
€ 1 918 750,00
Address
45, Rue D'ulm
75230 Paris Cedex 05

See on map

Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Non-EU contribution
€ 0,00
Third-party

Legal entity other than a subcontractor which is affiliated or legally linked to a participant. The entity carries out work under the conditions laid down in the Grant Agreement, supplies goods or provides services for the action, but did not sign the Grant Agreement. A third party abides by the rules applicable to its related participant under the Grant Agreement with regard to eligibility of costs and control of expenditure.

FONDATION DE L'ECOLE NORMALE SUPERIEURE
France
Net EU contribution
€ 175 000,00
Address
45 Rue D Ulm
75005 Paris

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Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Other
Non-EU contribution
€ 0,00
Third-party

Legal entity other than a subcontractor which is affiliated or legally linked to a participant. The entity carries out work under the conditions laid down in the Grant Agreement, supplies goods or provides services for the action, but did not sign the Grant Agreement. A third party abides by the rules applicable to its related participant under the Grant Agreement with regard to eligibility of costs and control of expenditure.

CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE CNRS
France
Net EU contribution
€ 406 250,00
Address
Rue Michel Ange 3
75794 Paris

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Region
Ile-de-France Ile-de-France Paris
Activity type
Research Organisations
Non-EU contribution
€ 0,00