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Recovering interstellar gas properties with HI spectral lines: a comparison between synthetic spectra and 21-SPONGE

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Murray, CE, Stanimirovic, S, Kim, C-G, Ostriker, EC, Lindner, RR, Heiles, C, Dickey, JM ORCID: 0000-0002-6300-7459 and Babler, B 2017 , 'Recovering interstellar gas properties with HI spectral lines: a comparison between synthetic spectra and 21-SPONGE' , Astrophysical Journal, vol. 837, no. 1 , pp. 1-18 , doi: 10.3847/1538-4357/aa5d12.

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Abstract

We analyze synthetic neutral hydrogen (HI) absorption and emission spectral lines from a high-resolution, three-dimensional hydrodynamical simulation to quantify how well observational methods recover the physical properties of interstellar gas. We present a new method for uniformly decomposing HI spectral lines and estimating the properties of associated gas using the Autonomous Gaussian Decomposition (AGD) algorithm. We find that HI spectral lines recover physical structures in the simulation with excellent completeness at high Galactic latitude, and this completeness declines with decreasing latitude due to strong velocity-blending of spectral lines. The temperature and column density inferred from our decomposition and radiative transfer method agree with the simulated values within a factor of Ts < 4000 K), which are not seen in 21-SPONGE despite sufficient observational sensitivity. We demonstrate that our analysis method is a powerful tool for diagnosing neutral interstellar medium conditions, and future work is needed to improve observational statistics and implementation of simulated physics.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Murray, CE and Stanimirovic, S and Kim, C-G and Ostriker, EC and Lindner, RR and Heiles, C and Dickey, JM and Babler, B
Keywords: radio astronomy, galactic structure, interstellar medium, ISM clouds, ISM structure, radio lines
Journal or Publication Title: Astrophysical Journal
Publisher: Univ Chicago Press
ISSN: 0004-637X
DOI / ID Number: 10.3847/1538-4357/aa5d12
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2017 The American Astronomical Society

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