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    The internal velocity structure within dense gaseous cores plays a crucial role in providing the initial conditions for star formation in molecular clouds. However, the kinematic properties of dense gas at core scales (∼0.01−0.1 pc) has not been extensively characterized because of instrument limitations until the unique capabilities of GBT-Argus became available. The ongoing GBT-Argus Large Program, Dynamics in Star-forming Cores (DiSCo) thus aims to investigate the origin and distribution of angular momentum of star-forming cores. DiSCo will survey all starless cores and Class 0 protostellar cores in the Perseus molecular complex down to ∼0.01 pc scales with <0.05 km s−1 velocity resolution using the dense gas tracer N2H+. Here, we present the first data sets from DiSCo towards the B1 and NGC 1333 regions in Perseus. Our results suggest that a dense core’s internal velocity structure has little correlation with other core-scale properties, indicating these gas motions may be originated externally from cloud-scale turbulence. These first data sets also reaffirm the ability of GBT-Argus for studying dense core velocity structure and provided an empirical basis for future studies that address the angular momentum problem with a statistically broad sample.

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    Arkenstone is a new model for multiphase, stellar feedback-driven galactic winds designed for inclusion in coarse resolution cosmological simulations. In this first paper of a series, we describe the features that allow Arkenstone to properly treat high specific energy wind components and demonstrate them using idealized non-cosmological simulations of a galaxy with a realistic circumgalactic medium (CGM), using the arepo code. Hot, fast gas phases with low mass loadings are predicted to dominate the energy content of multiphase outflows. In order to treat the huge dynamic range of spatial scales involved in cosmological galaxy formation at feasible computational expense, cosmological volume simulations typically employ a Lagrangian code or else use adaptive mesh refinement with a quasi-Lagrangian refinement strategy. However, it is difficult to inject a high specific energy wind in a Lagrangian scheme without incurring artificial burstiness. Additionally, the low densities inherent to this type of flow result in poor spatial resolution. Arkenstone addresses these issues with a novel scheme for coupling energy into the transition region between the interstellar medium (ISM) and the CGM, while also providing refinement at the base of the wind. Without our improvements, we show that poor spatial resolution near the sonic point of a hot, fast outflow leads to an underestimation of gas acceleration as the wind propagates. We explore the different mechanisms by which low and high specific energy winds can regulate the star formation rate of galaxies. In future work, we will demonstrate other aspects of the Arkenstone model.

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  3. 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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  4. Abstract We study the propagation of mildly relativistic cosmic rays (CRs) in multiphase interstellar medium environments with conditions typical of nearby disk galaxies. We employ the techniques developed in Armillotta et al. to postprocess three high-resolution TIGRESS magnetohydrodynamic simulations modeling local patches of star-forming galactic disks. Together, the three simulations cover a wide range of gas surface density, gravitational potential, and star formation rate (SFR). Our prescription for CR propagation includes the effects of advection by the background gas, streaming along the magnetic field at the local ion Alfvén speed, and diffusion relative to the Alfvén waves, with the diffusion coefficient set by the balance between streaming-driven Alfvén wave excitation and damping mediated by local gas properties. We find that the combined transport processes are more effective in environments with higher SFR. These environments are characterized by higher-velocity hot outflows (created by clustered supernovae) that rapidly advect CRs away from the galactic plane. As a consequence, the ratio of midplane CR pressure to midplane gas pressures decreases with increasing SFR. We also use the postprocessed simulations to make predictions regarding the potential dynamical impacts of CRs. The relatively flat CR pressure profiles near the midplane argue that they would not provide significant support against gravity for most of the ISM mass. However, the CR pressure gradients are larger than the other pressure gradients in the extraplanar region (∣ z ∣ > 0.5 kpc), suggesting that CRs may affect the dynamics of galactic fountains and/or winds. The degree of this impact is expected to increase in environments with lower SFR. 
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  5. Abstract

    The observed star formation rate of the Milky Way can be explained by applying a metallicity-dependent factor to convert CO luminosity to molecular gas mass and a star formation efficiency per freefall time that depends on the virial parameter of a molecular cloud. These procedures also predict the trend of star formation rate surface density with Galactocentric radius. The efficiency per freefall time variation with virial parameter plays a major role in bringing theory into agreement with observations for the total star formation rate, while the metallicity dependence of the CO luminosity-to-mass conversion is most notable in the variation with Galactocentric radius. Application of these changes resolves a factor of over 100 discrepancy between observed and theoretical star formation rates that has been known for nearly 50 yr.

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  6. Abstract Cosmic-ray transport on galactic scales depends on the detailed properties of the magnetized, multiphase interstellar medium (ISM). In this work, we postprocess a high-resolution TIGRESS magnetohydrodynamic simulation modeling a local galactic disk patch with a two-moment fluid algorithm for cosmic-ray transport. We consider a variety of prescriptions for the cosmic rays, from a simple, purely diffusive formalism with constant scattering coefficient, to a physically motivated model in which the scattering coefficient is set by the critical balance between streaming-driven Alfvén wave excitation and damping mediated by local gas properties. We separately focus on cosmic rays with kinetic energies of ∼1 GeV (high-energy) and ∼30 MeV (low energy), respectively important for ISM dynamics and chemistry. We find that simultaneously accounting for advection, streaming, and diffusion of cosmic rays is crucial for properly modeling their transport. Advection dominates in the high-velocity, low-density hot phase, while diffusion and streaming are more important in higher-density, cooler phases. Our physically motivated model shows that there is no single diffusivity for cosmic-ray transport: the scattering coefficient varies by four or more orders of magnitude, maximal at density n H ∼ 0.01 cm −3 . The ion-neutral damping of Alfvén waves results in strong diffusion and nearly uniform cosmic-ray pressure within most of the mass of the ISM. However, cosmic rays are trapped near the disk midplane by the higher scattering rate in the surrounding lower-density, higher-ionization gas. The transport of high-energy cosmic rays differs from that of low-energy cosmic rays, with less effective diffusion and greater energy losses for the latter. 
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  7. Abstract Stellar winds contain enough energy to easily disrupt the parent cloud surrounding a nascent star cluster, and for this reason they have long been considered candidates for regulating star formation. However, direct observations suggest most wind power is lost, and Lancaster et al. recently proposed that this is due to efficient mixing and cooling processes. Here we simulate star formation with wind feedback in turbulent, self-gravitating clouds, extending our previous work. Our simulations cover clouds with an initial surface density of 10 2 –10 4 M ⊙ pc −2 and show that star formation and residual gas dispersal are complete within two to eight initial cloud freefall times. The “efficiently cooled” model for stellar wind bubble evolution predicts that enough energy is lost for the bubbles to become momentum-driven; we find that this is satisfied in our simulations. We also find that wind energy losses from turbulent, radiative mixing layers dominate losses by “cloud leakage” over the timescales relevant for star formation. We show that the net star formation efficiency (SFE) in our simulations can be explained by theories that apply wind momentum to disperse cloud gas, allowing for highly inhomogeneous internal cloud structure. For very dense clouds, the SFE is similar to those observed in extreme star-forming environments. Finally, we find that, while self-pollution by wind material is insignificant in cloud conditions with moderate density (only ≲10 −4 of the stellar mass originated in winds), our simulations with conditions more typical of a super star cluster have star particles that form with as much as 1% of their mass in wind material. 
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  8. Abstract

    Observations indicate that the star formation rate (SFR) of nuclear rings varies considerably with time and is sometimes asymmetric rather than being uniform across a ring. To understand what controls temporal and spatial distributions of ring star formation, we run semiglobal, hydrodynamic simulations of nuclear rings subject to time-varying and/or asymmetric mass inflow rates. These controlled variations in the inflow lead to variations in the star formation, while the ring orbital period (18 Myr) and radius (600 pc) remain approximately constant. We find that both the mass inflow rate and supernova feedback affect the ring SFR. An oscillating inflow rate with period Δτinand amplitude 20 causes large-amplitude (a factor of ≳5), quasi-periodic variations of the SFR when Δτin≳ 50 Myr. We find that the time-varying interstellar medium (ISM) weight and midplane pressure track each other closely, establishing an instantaneous vertical equilibrium. The measured time-varying depletion time is consistent with the prediction from self-regulation theory provided the time delay between star formation and supernova feedback is taken into account. The supernova feedback is responsible only for small-amplitude (a factor of ∼2) fluctuations of the SFR with a timescale ≲40 Myr. Asymmetry in the inflow rate does not necessarily lead to asymmetric star formation in nuclear rings. Only when the inflow rate from one dust lane is suddenly increased by a large factor do the rings undergo a transient period of lopsided star formation.

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