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  1. Abstract

    We present a12CO(J= 2−1) survey of 60 local galaxies using data from the Atacama Compact Array as part of the Extragalactic Database for Galaxy Evolution: the ACA EDGE survey. These galaxies all have integral field spectroscopy from the CALIFA survey. Compared to other local galaxy surveys, ACA EDGE is designed to mitigate selection effects based on CO brightness and morphological type. Of the 60 galaxies in ACA EDGE, 36 are on the star formation main sequence, 13 are on the red sequence, and 11 lie in the “green valley” transition between these sequences. We test how star formation quenching processes affect the star formation rate (SFR) per unit molecular gas mass, SFEmol= SFR/Mmol, and related quantities in galaxies with stellar masses 10 ≤ log[M/M] ≤ 11.5 covering the full range of morphological types. We observe a systematic decrease of the molecular-to-stellar mass fraction (Rmol) with a decreasing level of star formation activity, with green valley galaxies also having lower SFEmolthan galaxies on the main sequence. On average, we find that the spatially resolved SFEmolwithin the bulge region of green valley galaxies is lower than in the bulges of main-sequence galaxies if we adopt a constant CO-to-H2conversion factor,αCO. While efficiencies in main-sequence galaxies remain almost constant with galactocentric radius, in green valley galaxies, we note a systematic increase of SFEmol,Rmol, and specific SFR with increasing radius. As shown in previous studies, our results suggest that although gas depletion (or removal) seems to be the most important driver of the star formation quenching in galaxies transiting through the green valley, a reduction in star formation efficiency is also required during this stage.

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  2. Abstract

    M82 is an archetypal starburst galaxy in the local Universe. The central burst of star formation, thought to be triggered by M82's interaction with other members in the M81 group, is driving a multiphase galaxy-scale wind away from the plane of the disk that has been studied across the electromagnetic spectrum. Here, we present new velocity-resolved observations of the [Cii] 158μm line in the central disk and the southern outflow of M82 using the upGREAT instrument on board SOFIA. We also report the first detections of velocity-resolved (ΔV= 10 km s−1) [Cii] emission in the outflow of M82 at projected distances of ≈1–2 kpc south of the galaxy center. We compare the [Cii] line profiles to observations of CO and Hiand find that likely the majority (>55%) of the [Cii] emission in the outflow is associated with the neutral atomic medium. We find that the fraction of [Cii] actually outflowing from M82 is small compared to the bulk gas outside the midplane (which may be in a halo or tidal streamers), which has important implications for observations of [Cii] outflows at higher redshift. Finally, by comparing the observed ratio of the [Cii] and CO intensities to models of photodissociation regions, we estimate that the far-ultraviolet (FUV) radiation field in the disk is ∼103.5G0, in agreement with previous estimates. In the outflow, however, the FUV radiation field is 2–3 orders of magnitudes lower, which may explain the high fraction of [Cii] arising from the neutral medium in the wind.

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    We present a method to characterize star-formation driven outflows from edge-on galaxies and apply this method to the metal-poor starburst galaxy, Mrk 1486. Our method uses the distribution of emission line flux (from H β and [O iii] 5007) to identify the location of the outflow and measure the extent above the disc, the opening angle, and the transverse kinematics. We show that this simple technique recovers a similar distribution of the outflow without requiring complex modelling of line-splitting or multi-Gaussian components, and is therefore applicable to lower spectral resolution data. In Mrk 1486 we observe an asymmetric outflow in both the location of the peak flux and total flux from each lobe. We estimate an opening angle of 17–37° depending on the method and assumptions adopted. Within the minor axis outflows, we estimate a total mass outflow rate of ∼2.5 M⊙ yr−1, which corresponds to a mass loading factor of η = 0.7. We observe a non-negligible amount of flux from ionized gas outflowing along the edge of the disc (perpendicular to the biconical components), with a mass outflow rate ∼0.9 M⊙ yr−1. Our results are intended to demonstrate a method that can be applied to high-throughput low spectral resolution observations, such as narrow-band filters or low spectral resolution integral field spectrographs that may be more able to recover the faint emission from outflows.

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  4. Abstract The spectral line energy distribution of carbon monoxide contains information about the physical conditions of the star-forming molecular hydrogen gas; however, the relation to local radiation field properties is poorly constrained. Using ∼1–2 kpc scale Atacama Large Millimeter Array observations of CO(3−2) and CO(4−3), we characterize the CO(4−3)/CO(3−2) line ratios of local analogues of main-sequence galaxies at z ∼ 1–2, drawn from the DYnamics of Newly Assembled Massive Objects (DYNAMO) sample. We measure CO(4−3)/CO(3−2) across the disk of each galaxy and find a median line ratio of R 43 = 0.54 − 0.15 + 0.16 for the sample. This is higher than literature estimates of local star-forming galaxies and is consistent with multiple lines of evidence that indicate DYNAMO galaxies, despite residing in the local universe, resemble main-sequence galaxies at z ∼ 1–2. Comparing with existing lower-resolution CO(1−0) observations, we find R 41 and R 31 values in the range ∼0.2–0.3 and ∼0.4–0.8, respectively. We combine our kiloparsec-scale resolved line ratio measurements with Hubble Space Telescope observations of H α to investigate the relation to the star formation rate surface density and compare this relation to expectations from models. We find increasing CO(4−3)/CO(3−2) with increasing star formation rate surface density; however, models overpredict the line ratios across the range of star formation rate surface densities we probe, in particular at the lower range. Finally, Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy observations with the High-resolution Airborne Wideband Camera Plus and Field-Imaging Far-Infrared Line Spectrometer reveal low dust temperatures and no deficit of [C ii ] emission with respect to the total infrared luminosity. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2024
  5. Abstract

    We analyze image and spectral data from ≈365 ks of observations from the Chandra X-ray Observatory of the nearby, edge-on starburst galaxy NGC 253 to constrain properties of the hot phase of the outflow. We focus our analysis on the −1.1 to +0.63 kpc region of the outflow and define several regions for spectral extraction where we determine best-fit temperatures and metal abundances. We find that the temperatures and electron densities peak in the central ∼250 pc region of the outflow and decrease with distance. These temperature and density profiles are in disagreement with an adiabatic spherically expanding starburst wind model and suggest the presence of additional physics such as mass loading and nonspherical outflow geometry. Our derived temperatures and densities yield cooling times in the nuclear region of a few million years, which may imply that the hot gas can undergo bulk radiative cooling as it escapes along the minor axis. Our metal abundances of O, Ne, Mg, Si, S, and Fe all peak in the central region and decrease with distance along the outflow, with the exception of Ne, which maintains a flat distribution. The metal abundances indicate significant dilution outside of the starburst region. We also find estimates of the mass outflow rates, which are 2.8Myr−1in the northern outflow and 3.2Myr−1in the southern outflow. Additionally, we detect emission from charge exchange and find it makes a significant contribution (20%–42%) to the total broadband (0.5–7 keV) X-ray emission in the central and southern regions of the outflow.

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  6. Abstract

    We present13CO(J= 1 → 0) observations for the EDGE-CALIFA survey, which is a mapping survey of 126 nearby galaxies at a typical spatial resolution of 1.5 kpc. Using detected12CO emission as a prior, we detect13CO in 41 galaxies via integrated line flux over the entire galaxy and in 30 galaxies via integrated line intensity in resolved synthesized beams. Incorporating our CO observations and optical IFU spectroscopy, we perform a systematic comparison between the line ratio12/13I[12CO(J=10)]/I[13CO(J=10)]and the properties of the stars and ionized gas. Higher12/13values are found in interacting galaxies compared to those in noninteracting galaxies. The global12/13slightly increases with infrared colorF60/F100but appears insensitive to other host-galaxy properties such as morphology, stellar mass, or galaxy size. We also present azimuthally averaged12/13profiles for our sample up to a galactocentric radius of 0.4r25(∼6 kpc), taking into account the13CO nondetections by spectral stacking. The radial profiles of12/13are quite flat across our sample. Within galactocentric distances of 0.2r25, the azimuthally averaged12/13increases with the star formation rate. However, Spearman rank correlation tests show the azimuthally averaged12/13does not strongly correlate with any other gas or stellar properties in general, especially beyond 0.2r25from the galaxy centers. Our findings suggest that in the complex environments in galaxy disks,12/13is not a sensitive tracer for ISM properties. Dynamical disturbances, like galaxy interactions or the presence of a bar, also have an overall impact on12/13, which further complicates the interpretations of12/13variations.

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  7. Abstract

    Determining how the galactic environment, especially the high gas densities and complex dynamics in bar-fed galaxy centers, alters the star formation efficiency (SFE) of molecular gas is critical to understanding galaxy evolution. However, these same physical or dynamical effects also alter the emissivity properties of CO, leading to variations in the CO-to-H2conversion factor (αCO) that impact the assessment of the gas column densities and thus of the SFE. To address such issues, we investigate the dependence ofαCOon the local CO velocity dispersion at 150 pc scales using a new set of dust-basedαCOmeasurements and propose a newαCOprescription that accounts for CO emissivity variations across galaxies. Based on this prescription, we estimate the SFE in a sample of 65 galaxies from the PHANGS–Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array survey. We find increasing SFE toward high-surface-density regions like galaxy centers, while using a constant or metallicity-basedαCOresults in a more homogeneous SFE throughout the centers and disks. Our prescription further reveals a mean molecular gas depletion time of 700 Myr in the centers of barred galaxies, which is overall three to four times shorter than in nonbarred galaxy centers or the disks. Across the galaxy disks, the depletion time is consistently around 2–3 Gyr, regardless of the choice ofαCOprescription. All together, our results suggest that the high level of star formation activity in barred centers is not simply due to an increased amount of molecular gas, but also to an enhanced SFE compared to nonbarred centers or disk regions.

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  8. Abstract The CO-to-H 2 conversion factor ( α CO ) is central to measuring the amount and properties of molecular gas. It is known to vary with environmental conditions, and previous studies have revealed lower α CO in the centers of some barred galaxies on kiloparsec scales. To unveil the physical drivers of such variations, we obtained Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array bands (3), (6), and (7) observations toward the inner ∼2 kpc of NGC 3627 and NGC 4321 tracing 12 CO, 13 CO, and C 18 O lines on ∼100 pc scales. Our multiline modeling and Bayesian likelihood analysis of these data sets reveal variations of molecular gas density, temperature, optical depth, and velocity dispersion, which are among the key drivers of α CO . The central 300 pc nuclei in both galaxies show strong enhancement of temperature T k ≳ 100 K and density n H 2 > 10 3 cm −3 . Assuming a CO-to-H 2 abundance of 3 × 10 −4 , we derive 4–15 times lower α CO than the Galactic value across our maps, which agrees well with previous kiloparsec-scale measurements. Combining the results with our previous work on NGC 3351, we find a strong correlation of α CO with low- J 12 CO optical depths ( τ CO ), as well as an anticorrelation with T k . The τ CO correlation explains most of the α CO variation in the three galaxy centers, whereas changes in T k influence α CO to second order. Overall, the observed line width and 12 CO/ 13 CO 2–1 line ratio correlate with τ CO variation in these centers, and thus they are useful observational indicators for α CO variation. We also test current simulation-based α CO prescriptions and find a systematic overprediction, which likely originates from the mismatch of gas conditions between our data and the simulations. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  9. Abstract NGC 602 is a young, low-metallicity star cluster in the “Wing” of the Small Magellanic Cloud. We reveal the recent evolutionary past of the cluster through analysis of high-resolution (∼0.4 pc) Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array observations of molecular gas in the associated H ii region N90. We identify 110 molecular clumps ( R < 0.8 pc) traced by CO emission, and study the relationship between the clumps and associated young stellar objects (YSOs) and pre-main-sequence (PMS) stars. The clumps have high virial parameters (typical α vir = 4–11) and may retain signatures of a collision in the last ≲8 Myr between H i components of the adjacent supergiant shell SMC-SGS 1. We obtain a CO-bright-to-H 2 gas conversion factor of X CO, B = (3.4 ± 0.2) × 10 20 cm −2 (K km s −1 ) −1 , and correct observed clump properties for CO-dark H 2 gas to derive a total molecular gas mass in N90 of 16,600 ± 2400 M ⊙ . We derive a recent (≲1 Myr) star formation rate of 130 ± 30 M ⊙ Myr −1 with an efficiency of 8% ± 3% assessed through comparing total YSO mass to total molecular gas mass. Very few significant radial trends exist between clump properties or PMS star ages and distance from NGC 602. We do not find evidence for a triggered star formation scenario among the youngest (≲2 Myr) stellar generations, and instead conclude that a sequential star formation process in which NGC 602 did not directly cause recent star formation in the region is likely. 
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    The EXperiment for Cryogenic Large-Aperture Intensity Mapping (EXCLAIM) is a balloon-borne cryogenic telescope that will survey the spectrum of diffuse emission from both the Milky Way and the cosmic web to probe star formation, the interstellar medium, and galaxy evolution across cosmic time. EXCLAIM’s primary extragalactic science survey maps 305 deg2 along the celestial equator with an R = 512 spectrometer over the frequency range ν = 420 − 540 GHz, targeting emission of the [C ii] line over redshifts 2.5 < z < 3.5 and several CO lines for z < 1. Cross-correlation with galaxy redshift catalogues isolates line emission from the large-scale structure at target redshifts. In this paper, we forecast the sensitivity for both the two-point and conditional one-point cross-correlation. We predict that EXCLAIM will detect both the [C ii]-QSO cross-power spectrum and the conditional voxel intensity distribution (CVID) at various redshifts under a broad range of [C ii] intensity models, allowing it to differentiate among these models in the literature. These forecasts for the power spectra include the effects of line interlopers and continuum foreground contamination. We then convert the joint [C ii] constraints from both the cross-power spectrum and the CVID into constraints on the [C ii] halo luminosity–mass relation $L_\mathrm{[C\, \small {II}]}(M)$ model parameters and the star formation rate density (SFRD) from [C ii] emission. We also develop sensitivity estimates for CO, showing the ability to differentiate between models.

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