Thesis Title

Analysis of High Velocity Outflows in 14 Compact Starburst Galaxies with Absorption-Line Spectroscopy at High Spectral Resolution

Department or Program

Physics and Astronomy


I present an analysis of the absorption spectra of 14 compact starburst galaxies of redshift $z=0.4$--0.8 that exhibit outflows $>1000$~\kms\ with the 10-meter Keck telescope and HIRES spectrograph. These data allow us to examine the velocity structure of outflowing gas as traced by blueshifted interstellar absorption lines- specifically for various various Mg and Fe ions. Furthermore, the estimated values for optical depth ($\tau$) and covering fraction to help coax more information about each galaxy. Plotting these characteristics versus velocity often exhibited the complex nature of our data, and the need to update the Voigt profile technique currently being used to model the complex velocity structure of each galaxy. This paper focuses on integrating a Python package, called Linetools, to handle the complex velocity structure of our galaxies. It’s worth mentioning that a code that generates covering fraction plots and bring Fe ions into the loop was also developed. This combination allows for the exploration of how the Mg/Fe ratio varies as a function of velocity, which provides information about the chemical composition and age of each galaxy. In the future the Linetools code will be used to accurately model complex velocity structures, allowing for deep and accurate connections to form between my sample of galaxies. Furthermore, comparing Mg/Fe ratios could spark comparisons between rare galaxies and more typical galaxies, leading to the creation of a classification system for the “life cycle” of a broad range of galaxies.

Level of Access

Open Access

First Advisor

Diamond-Stanic, Aleksandar

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Science

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 pdf file

Open Access

Available to all.