ORIGAMI: The Origin of the Galactic Magnetic Field


Knowing the strength and morphology of the galactic magnetic field lies at the heart of virtually all the outstanding problems in galactic astrophysics. If strong enough, the magnetic field can shape the interstellar medium and determine the rate and outcome of star formation. However, no observational method, existing or under development, can measure the full magnetic vector. We need self-consistent numerical models of the magnetic field evolution, both in order to complete our galactic evolution theories and to interpret the increasing volume of polarization observations.

ORIGAMI is a Marie Curie project led by Dr. E. Ntormousi, that reconstructs the Galactic magnetic field using numerical simulations of galaxy and magnetic field co-evolution. Our state-of-the-art models combine detailed star formation and feedback processes with magnetic fields, at the same time offering the dynamical range necessary for modeling the galactic dynamo. Technically, ORIGAMI poses a challenge that pushes our numerical tools to a new era. Physically, it opens a meaningful conversation between models and observations of the Galactic magnetic field.