skip to main content

Title: High-resolution Observations of H i in the IC 63 Reflection Nebula

Photodissociation regions (PDRs), where the (far-)ultraviolet light from hot young stars interact with the gas in surrounding molecular clouds, provide laboratories for understanding the nature and role of feedback by star formation on the interstellar medium. While the general nature of PDRs is well understood—at least under simplified conditions—the detailed dynamics and chemistry of these regions, including gas clumping, evolution over time, etc., can be very complex. We present interferometric observations of the 21 cm atomic hydrogen line, combined with [Cii] 158μm observations, toward the nearby reflection nebula IC 63. We find a clumpy Histructure in the PDR, and a ring morphology for the Hiemission at the tip of IC 63. We further unveil kinematic substructure, of the order of 1 km s−1, in the PDR layers and several legs that will disperse IC 63 in <0.5 Myr. We find that the dynamics in the PDR explain the observed clumpy Hidistribution and lack of a well-defined Hi/H2transition front. However, it is currently not possible to conclude whether Hiself-absorption and nonequilibrium chemistry also contribute to this clumpy morphology and missing Hi/H2transition front.

more » « less
Author(s) / Creator(s):
; ; ; ; ; ; ; ; ;
Publisher / Repository:
DOI PREFIX: 10.3847
Date Published:
Journal Name:
The Astronomical Journal
Medium: X Size: Article No. 243
Article No. 243
Sponsoring Org:
National Science Foundation
More Like this
  1. Abstract

    We used high-resolution [Cii] 158μm mapping of two nebulae IC 59 and IC 63 from SOFIA/upGREAT in conjunction with ancillary data of the gas, dust, and polarization to probe the kinematics, structure, and magnetic properties of their photodissociation regions (PDRs). The nebulae are part of the Sh 2-185 Hiiregion that is illuminated by the B0 IVe starγCas. The velocity structure of each PDR changes with distance fromγCas, which is consistent with driving by the radiation. Based on previous far-ultraviolet (FUV) flux measurements of, and the known distance to,γCas, along with the predictions of 3D distances to the clouds, we estimated the FUV radiation field strength (G0) at the clouds. Assuming negligible extinction between the star and clouds, we find their 3D distances fromγCas. For IC 63, our results are consistent with earlier estimates of distance from Andersson et al., locating the cloud at ∼2 pc fromγCas at an angle of 58° to the plane of the sky behind the star. For IC 59, we derive a distance of 4.5 pc at an angle of 70° in front of the star. We do not detect any significant correlation between the orientation of the magnetic field and the velocity gradients of [Cii] gas, which indicates a moderate magnetic field strength. The kinetic energy in IC 63 is estimated to be an order of 10 higher than the magnetic energies. This suggests that kinetic pressure in this nebula is dominant.

    more » « less
  2. Abstract

    We compare observations of Hifrom the Very Large Array (VLA) and the Arecibo Observatory and observations of HCO+from the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) and the Northern Extended Millimeter Array (NOEMA) in the diffuse (AV≲ 1) interstellar medium (ISM) to predictions from a photodissociation region (PDR) chemical model and multiphase ISM simulations. Using a coarse grid of PDR models, we estimate the density, FUV radiation field, and cosmic-ray ionization rate (CRIR) for each structure identified in HCO+and Hiabsorption. These structures fall into two categories. Structures withTs< 40 K, mostly withN(HCO+) ≲ 1012cm−2, are consistent with modest density, FUV radiation field, and CRIR models, typical of the diffuse molecular ISM. Structures with spin temperatureTs> 40 K, mostly withN(HCO+) ≳ 1012cm−2, are consistent with high density, FUV radiation field, and CRIR models, characteristic of environments close to massive star formation. The latter are also found in directions with a significant fraction of thermally unstable Hi. In at least one case, we rule out the PDR model parameters, suggesting that alternative mechanisms (e.g., nonequilibrium processes like turbulent dissipation and/or shocks) are required to explain the observed HCO+in this direction. Similarly, while our observations and simulations of the turbulent, multiphase ISM agree that HCO+formation occurs along sight lines withN(H I) ≳ 1021cm−2, the simulated data fail to explain HCO+column densities ≳ few × 1012cm−2. Because a majority of our sight lines with HCO+had such high column densities, this likely indicates that nonequilibrium chemistry is important for these lines of sight.

    more » « less
  3. Abstract

    We present the discovery of neutral gas detected in both damped Lyαabsorption (DLA) and Hi21 cm emission outside of the stellar body of a galaxy, the first such detection in the literature. A joint analysis between the Cosmic Ultraviolet Baryon Survey and the MeerKAT Absorption Line Survey reveals an Hibridge connecting two interacting dwarf galaxies (log (Mstar/M) = 8.5 ± 0.2) that host az= 0.026 DLA with log[N(Hi)/cm−2] = 20.60 ± 0.05 toward the QSO J2339−5523 (zQSO= 1.35). At impact parameters ofd= 6 and 33 kpc, the dwarf galaxies have no companions more luminous than ≈0.05L*within at least Δv= ±300 km s−1andd≈ 350 kpc. The Hi21 cm emission is spatially coincident with the DLA at the 2σ–3σlevel per spectral channel over several adjacent beams. However, Hi21 cm absorption is not detected against the radio-bright QSO; if the background UV and radio sources are spatially aligned, the gas is either warm or clumpy (with a spin temperature to covering factor ratioTs/fc> 1880 K). Observations with VLT-MUSE demonstrate that theα-element abundance of the ionized interstellar medium (ISM) is consistent with the DLA (≈10% solar), suggesting that the neutral gas envelope is perturbed ISM gas. This study showcases the impact of dwarf–dwarf interactions on the physical and chemical state of neutral gas outside of star-forming regions. In the SKA era, joint UV and Hi21 cm analyses will be critical for connecting the cosmic neutral gas content to galaxy environments.

    more » « less
  4. Abstract

    To understand the mechanism behind high-zLyαnebulae, we simulate the scattering of Lyαin a Hihalo about a central Lyαsource. For the first time, we consider both smooth and clumpy distributions of halo gas, as well as a range of outflow speeds, total Hicolumn densities, Hispatial concentrations, and central source galaxies (e.g., with Lyαline widths corresponding to those typical of active galactic nucleus or star-forming galaxies). We compute the spatial-frequency diffusion and the polarization of the Lyαphotons scattered by atomic hydrogen. Our scattering-only model reproduces the typical size of Lyαnebulae (∼100 kpc) at total column densitiesNH I≥ 1020cm−2and predicts a range of positive, flat, and negative polarization radial gradients. We also find two general classes of Lyαnebula morphologies: with and without bright cores. Cores are seen whenNH Iis low, i.e., when the central source is directly visible, and are associated with a polarization jump, a steep increase in the polarization radial profile just outside the halo center. Of all the parameters tested in our smooth or clumpy medium model,NH Idominates the trends. The radial behaviors of the Lyαsurface brightness, spectral line shape, and polarization in the clumpy model with covering factorfc≳ 5 approach those of the smooth model at the sameNH I. A clumpy medium with highNH Iand lowfc≲ 2 generates Lyαfeatures via scattering that the smooth model cannot: a bright core, symmetric line profile, and polarization jump.

    more » « less
  5. Abstract

    One of the most fundamental baryonic matter components of galaxies is the neutral atomic hydrogen (Hi). At low redshifts, this component can be traced directly through the 21 cm transition, but to infer the Higas content of the most distant galaxies, a viable tracer is needed. We here investigate the fidelity of the fine-structure transition of the (2P3/22P1/3) transition of singly ionized carbon Ciiat 158μm as a proxy for Hiin a set simulated galaxies atz≈ 6, following the work by Heintz et al. We select 11,125 star-forming galaxies from thesimbasimulations, with far-infrared line emissions postprocessed and modeled within the Sigameframework. We find a strong connection between Ciiand Hi, with the relation between this Cii-to-Hirelation (β[CII]) being anticorrelated with the gas-phase metallicity of the simulated galaxies. We further use these simulations to make predictions for the total baryonic matter content of galaxies atz≈ 6, and specifically the Higas mass fraction. We find mean values ofMH I/M= 1.4 andMH I/Mbar,tot= 0.45. These results provide strong evidence for Hibeing the dominant baryonic matter component by mass in galaxies atz≈ 6.

    more » « less