Wednesday, May 1, 2013

1304.7770 (Jorge L. Pineda et al.)

A Herschel [CII] Galactic plane survey I: the global distribution of ISM gas components    [PDF]

Jorge L. Pineda, William D. Langer, Thangasamy Velusamy, Paul F. Goldsmith
[Abridged] The [CII] 158um line is an important tool for understanding the life cycle of interstellar matter. Ionized carbon is present in a variety of phases of the interstellar medium, including the diffuse ionized medium, warm and cold atomic clouds, clouds in transition from atomic to molecular, and dense and warm photon dominated regions (PDRs). The Galactic Observations of Terahertz C+ (GOTC+) project surveys the [CII] line over the entire Galactic disk with velocity-resolved observations using the Herschel/HIFI instrument. We present the first longitude-velocity maps of the [CII] emission for Galactic latitudes b=0deg, +-0.5deg, and +-1.0deg. [CII] emission is mostly associated with spiral arms, mainly emerging from Galactocentric distances between 4 and 10 kpc. We estimate that most of the observed [CII] emission is produced by dense PDRs (47%), with smaller contributions from CO-dark H2 gas (28%), cold atomic gas (21%), and ionized gas (4%). Atomic gas inside the Solar radius is mostly in the form of cold neutral medium (CNM), while the warm neutral medium (WNM) gas dominates the outer galaxy. The average fraction of CNM relative to total atomic gas is 43%. We find that the warm and diffuse CO-dark H2 is distributed over a larger range of Galactocentric distances (4-11 kpc) than the cold and dense H2 gas traced by 12CO and 13CO (4-8kpc). The fraction of CO-dark H2 to total H2 increases with Galactocentric distance, ranging from 20% at 4 kpc to 80% at 10 kpc. On average, CO-dark H2 accounts for 30% of the molecular mass of the Milky Way. When the CO-dark H2 component is included, the radial distribution of the CO-to-H2 conversion factor is steeper than that when only molecular gas traced by CO is considered. Most of the observed [CII] emission emerging from dense PDRs is associated with modest far-ultraviolet fields in the range chi0~1-30.
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