European Commission logo
English English
CORDIS - EU research results

GAs Stripping Phenomena in galaxies

Project description

Investigating the gaseous side of galaxy formation

Cold gas content largely reflects the history of a galaxy and its potential for future star formation. Any physical process that could alter the gas content of a galaxy has therefore important consequences for its evolution. The main aim of the EU-funded GASP project is to understand how, when and why gas is removed from galaxies in different environments. The project will use vast amounts of data, most of which were gathered with the MUSE instrument on the European Southern Observatory's Very Large Telescope, as well as with ALMA, APEX and HST, to study such processes. Project results will shed further light on jellyfish galaxies, namely galaxies that are being stripped of their gas.


The build up of galaxies is mainly driven by the availability of gas that can cool and form new stars. Any physical process that is able to alter the gas content of a galaxy has therefore important consequences for its evolution. The study of processes that can remove gas from galaxies is the subject of GASP (GAs Stripping Phenomena in galaxies), an ESO Large Program I am leading. GASP has obtained integral field spectroscopy (IFS) with MUSE of 114 low-z galaxies with masses in the range 10^9-10^11.5 Msun, hosted in X-ray selected clusters, in groups and filaments. The GASP sample includes the largest existing IFS sample of so- called “jellyfish galaxies” that have long tails of ionised gas, as well as other galaxies in different stages of ram pressure stripping in clusters and galaxies undergoing gas disturbance due to various phenomena in groups and filaments. GASP has the unique capability to combine the power of spatially resolved observations covering galaxy disks, outskirts and surroundings with the virtues of a statistical study of a significant number of galaxies. The MUSE GASP dataset, combined with ALMA, APEX, JVLA, UVIT and HST follow-up programs, form the basis for this ERC program. The goal is to accomplish an unprecedented break-through in our understanding of jellyfish galaxies, ram pressure stripping, gas removal processes in different environments and their consequences for the stellar history of galaxies. This multi faced, coherent program will investigate the physics of the baryonic cycle between the various gas phases (ionised, molecular and neutral) and the star formation under extreme conditions, the connection between ram pressure and AGN activity, the quenching of galaxies undergoing gas removal phenomena, and the physics of such phenomena in clusters, groups and filaments. The GASP ERC program will be a game changer in this field of research: there is no previous similar study, nor there can be a comparable one for quite a long time.

Host institution

Net EU contribution
€ 2 498 237,50
00136 Roma

See on map

Centro (IT) Lazio Roma
Activity type
Research Organisations
Total cost
€ 2 498 237,50

Beneficiaries (1)