CODEX Show Case 3

The complete science document (as it was prepared for Phase A , Feb. 2010) is available here in pdf format.

How galaxies assembled and came to look the way they do is another of the big  questions in Astronomy. Much has been learned in this respect from our own Galaxy which we can study in so much more detail than other galaxies. CODEX will take the sensitivity with which weak features of rare isotopes in stellar spectra can be studied to new limits. This should turn nucleochronometry - the equivalent of dating materials on the Earth using radioactive nuclides - into an accurate quantitative astronomical tool. The resulting precise age determinations of stars  should lead to substantial progress in unravelling the assembly history of the Milky Way.

Figure 5.

 Probing the Milky Way with Galactic archaeology.

Figure 6.

Comparison of the performance of UVES (top panel) and CODEX (bottom panel). With UVES an accuracy of 0.05 dex is not attainable even in the absence of noise. With S/N = 1000 CODEX will reach an accuracy of 0.03 dex.