AAS 203rd Meeting, January 2004
Session 131 Galaxy Evolution with HST Surveys
Oral, Thursday, January 8, 2004, 2:00-3:30pm, Centennial III

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[131.03] The Validity of the Extinction Corrected Star Formation Distribution Function

R.I. Thompson (Steward Observatory, University of Arizona)

The star formation distribution function utilizes the star formation rate in every pixel that lies within a detected galaxy in a given image or sets of images. As such it measures the distribution of star formation rates over all of the galaxies in the images, giving a global star formation rate. If the true star formation rate is to be found, the observed star formation rate must be corrected for observational factors such as extinction and selection functions.

Under the assumption that the shape of the distribution is invariant with time and location, total star formation rates can be derived from observations that measure only the brightest regions of the distribution. This provides a powerful tool for extending star formation measures in the early universe.

The validity of these assumptions is tested by comparing the distribution function derived from different sets of observations to see if the shape is truly universal.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 35#5
© 2003. The American Astronomical Soceity.