"Anisotropies in the infrared background as a probe of the complete history of star formation"

Lloyd Knox

University of California Davis

From wavelengths of microns to millimeters the dominant emission mechanism from star-forming galaxies is thermal emission from interstellar dust. The steepness of the spectrum on the Rayleigh-Jeans side leads to an unusual brightness -- redshift relation: for observation at two mm of an object of fixed bolometric luminosity, apparent brightness is nearly independent of redshift from z = 0.5 to z = 20. By studying these objects, either resolved into individual sources or as a diffuse background, we are thus detecting the effects of star formation over its complete history. In this talk I will present recent measurements of the power spectrum of this background (made with instruments in space, under a balloon and at the South Pole) and their implications for models of galaxy evolution. I will also speculate about what we will learn about galaxy evolution from the high-precision measurements of the infrared background to come soon from the Planck satellite launched last year and further SPT observations.