High resolution science with high redshift galaxies

Rogier Windhorst, N. P. Hathi, S. H. Cohen, R. A. Jansen, D. Kawata, S. P. Driver, B. Gibson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


We summarize the high-resolution science that has been done on high redshift galaxies with Adaptive Optics (AO) on the world's largest ground-based facilities and with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST). These facilities complement each other. Ground-based AO provides better light gathering power and in principle better resolution than HST, giving it the edge in high spatial resolution imaging and high resolution spectroscopy. HST produces higher quality, more stable PSF's over larger field-of-views in a much darker sky-background than ground-based AO, and yields deeper wide-field images and low-resolution spectra than the ground. Faint galaxies have steadily decreasing sizes at fainter fluxes and higher redshifts, reflecting the hierarchical formation of galaxies over cosmic time. HST has imaged this process in great structural detail to z ≲ 6, and ground-based AO and spectroscopy has provided measurements of their masses and other physical properties with cosmic time. Last, we review how the 6.5 m James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will measure First Light, reionization, and galaxy assembly in the near-mid-IR after 2013.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1965-1971
Number of pages7
JournalAdvances in Space Research
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2008


  • Distant galaxies
  • First Light
  • Galaxy assembly
  • High resolution imaging
  • James Webb Space Telescope
  • Reionization

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Geophysics
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences


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