[CII] emission and star formation in the spiral arms of M 31 - Archive ouverte HAL Access content directly
Journal Articles Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A Year : 2006

[CII] emission and star formation in the spiral arms of M 31

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Abstract

Context: .The [Cii] 158 mum line is the most important coolant of the interstellar medium in galaxies but substantial variations are seen from object to object. The main source of the emission at a galactic scale is still poorly understood and candidates range from photodissociation regions (PDRs) to the cold neutral or diffuse warm ionized medium. Previous studies of the [Cii] emission in galaxies have a resolution of several kpc or more so the observed emission is an average of different ISM components.
Aims: .The aim of this work is to study, for the first time, the [Cii] emission at the scale of a spiral arm. We want to investigate the origin of this line and its use as a tracer of star formation.
Methods: . We present [Cii] and [Oi] observations of a segment of a spiral arm of M 31 using the Infrared Space Observatory. The [Cii] emission is compared with tracers of neutral gas (CO, Hi) and star formation (Halpha, Spitzer 24 mum).
Results: . The similarity of the [Cii] emission with the Halpha and 24 mum images is striking when smoothed to the same resolution, whereas the correlation with the neutral gas is much weaker. The [Cii] cooling rate per H atom increases dramatically from ˜ 2.7 × 10-26 erg s-1 atom-1 in the border of the map to ˜ 1.4 × 10-25 erg s-1 atom-1 in the regions of star formation. The [Cii]/FIR{42-122} ratio is almost constant at 2%, a factor 3 higher than typically quoted. However, we do not believe that M 31 is unusual. Rather, the whole-galaxy fluxes used for the comparisons include the central regions where the [Cii]/FIR ratio is known to be lower and the resolved observations neither isolate a spiral arm nor include data as far out in the galactic disk as the observations presented here. A fit to published PDR models yields a plausible average solution of G0 ˜ 100 and n ˜ 3000 for the PDR emission in the regions of star formation in the arm of M 31.

Dates and versions

hal-03732376 , version 1 (21-07-2022)

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N. J. Rodriguez-Fernandez, J. Braine, N. Brouillet, Françoise Combes. [CII] emission and star formation in the spiral arms of M 31. Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A, 2006, 453, pp.77-82. ⟨10.1051/0004-6361:20054662⟩. ⟨hal-03732376⟩
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