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The correlation of dust and gas emission in star-forming environments

Morgan, LK, Moore, TJT, Eden, DJ, Hatchell, J and Urquhart, JS (2014) The correlation of dust and gas emission in star-forming environments. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 440 (2). pp. 1730-1752. ISSN 0035-8711

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We present ammonia maps of portions of the W3 and Perseus molecular clouds in order to compare gas emission with submillimetre continuum thermal emission which are commonly used to trace the same mass component in star-forming regions, often under the assumption of local thermodynamic equilibrium (LTE).
The Perseus and W3 star-forming regions are found to have significantly different physical characteristics consistent with the difference in size scales traced by our observations. Accounting for the distance of the W3 region does not fully reconcile these differences, suggesting that there may be an underlying difference in the structure of the two regions.
Peak positions of submillimetre and ammonia emission do not correlate strongly. Also, the extent of diffuse emission is only moderately matched between ammonia and thermal emission. Source sizes measured from our observations are consistent between regions, although there is a noticeable difference between the submillimetre source sizes with sources in Perseus being significantly smaller than those in W3.
Fractional abundances of ammonia are determined for our sources which indicate a dip in the measured ammonia abundance at the positions of peak submillimetre column density.
Virial ratios are determined which show that our sources are generally bound in both regions, although there is considerable scatter in both samples. We conclude that sources in Perseus are bound on smaller scales than in W3 in a way that may reflect their previous identification as low- and high-mass, respectively.
Our results indicate that assumptions of local thermal equilibrium and/or the coupling of the dust and gas phases in star-forming regions may not be as robust as commonly assumed.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This article has been accepted for publication in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society ©: 2014 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.
Uncontrolled Keywords: 0201 Astronomical And Space Sciences
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Q Science > QC Physics
Q Science > QD Chemistry
Divisions: Astrophysics Research Institute
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Related URLs:
Date Deposited: 08 Mar 2018 11:10
Last Modified: 04 Sep 2021 02:56
DOI or ID number: 10.1093/mnras/stu362
URI: https://researchonline.ljmu.ac.uk/id/eprint/8224
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