21-cm absorption studies with the Square Kilometer Array

Kanekar, N. ; Briggs, F.H. (2004) 21-cm absorption studies with the Square Kilometer Array New Astronomy Reviews, 48 (11-12). pp. 1259-1270. ISSN 1387-6473

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Official URL: http://doi.org/10.1016/j.newar.2004.09.030

Related URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.newar.2004.09.030


HI 21-cm absorption spectroscopy provides an excellent probe of the neutral gas content of absorbing galaxies, yielding information on their kinematics, mass, physical size and ISM conditions. The high sensitivity, unrivaled frequency coverage and RFI suppression techniques of the SKA will enable it to use HI absorption to study the ISM of high column density intervening systems along thousands of lines of sight out to high redshifts. Blind SKA 21-cm surveys will yield large, unbiased absorber samples, tracing the evolution of normal galaxies and active galactic nuclei from z ≳ 6 to the present epoch. It will thus be possible to directly measure the physical size and mass of typical galaxies as a function of redshift and, hence, to test hierarchical models of structure formation.

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