MPIA: Archaeological Record of Milky Way Written by Atomic Hydrogen

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MPIA: Archaeological Record of Milky Way Written by Atomic Hydrogen

Post by bystander » Thu Oct 22, 2020 5:39 pm

Archaeological Record of Milky Way Written by Atomic Hydrogen
Max Planck Institute for Astronomy | Max Planck Society | 2020 Oct 21

Astronomers reveal the most detailed map of the raw material needed to form stars

An international group of astronomers, led by Juan Diego Soler of the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy, have found a complex network of filamentary structures of atomic hydrogen gas that pervades the Milky Way. They made this intricate web of gas visible by applying techniques from machine vision to THOR survey data that provides the most detailed view on the distribution of atomic hydrogen in the inner Milky Way to date. The scientists analysed the filaments’ orientations relative to the Milky Way disk using statistical methods and simulations. They inferred that the structure conserved an imprint of historic dynamical processes induced by the rotation of the galactic disk and feedback from ancient supernova explosions.

Hydrogen is the key ingredient to form new stars. Yet, although it is the most abundant chemical element in the Universe, the question of how this gas assembles into clouds from which stars ultimately form, is still an open one. A collaboration of astronomers headed by Juan Diego Soler from the Max Planck Institute of Astronomy (MPIA) in Heidelberg has now taken an important step to answering it.

Soler processed data of the MPIA-led THOR (The HI/OH/recombination line) survey, which contains observations obtained with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) radio interferometer based in New Mexico, USA. The survey provides maps of gas distributed across the inner region of the Milky Way that have the highest spatial resolution to date. ...

The History of Dynamics and Stellar Feedback Revealed by the HI
Filamentary Structure in the Disk of the Milky Way
~ J. D. Soler et al The HI/OH/Recombination Line Survey of the Inner Milky Way
(THOR): Data Release 2 and HI Overview
~ Y. Wang et al The HI/OH/Recombination Line Survey of the Inner Milky Way
(THOR): Survey Overview and Data Release 1
~ H. Beuther et al
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