EDP Sciences
Free access
Issue
A&A
Volume 413, Number 2, January II 2004
Page(s) 505 - 523
Section Galactic structure and dynamics
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20031507


A&A 413, 505-523 (2004)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:20031507

Molecular gas in the galaxy M 83

I. The molecular gas distribution
A. A. Lundgren1, 2, T. Wiklind3, 4, H. Olofsson1 and G. Rydbeck4

1  Stockholm Observatory, AlbaNova, 106 91 Stockholm, Sweden
2  European Southern Observatory, Casilla 19001, Santiago 19, Chile
3  Space Telescope Science Institute, 3700 San Martin Drive Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
4  Onsala Space Observatory, 43992 Onsala, Sweden

(Received 2 January 2003 / Accepted 22 September 2003)

Abstract
We present 12CO  J=1-0 and J=2-1 Swedish-ESO Submillimetre Telescope (SEST) observations of the barred spiral galaxy M 83 (NGC 5236). The size of the CO maps is $10\arcmin\times10\arcmin$ and they cover the entire optical disk. The grid spacing is 11´´ for CO( J=1-0) and 11´´ or 7´´ for CO( J=2-1) depending on the position in the galaxy. In total we have obtained spectra in 1900 and 2574 positions in the CO( J=1-0) and CO( J=2-1) lines, respectively. The CO emission is strongly peaked toward the nucleus, which breaks up into two separate components in the CO( J=2-1) data due to the higher spatial resolution. Emission from the bar is strong, in particular on the leading edges of the bar. The molecular gas arms are clearly resolved and can be traced for more than 360°. Emission in the inter-arm regions is detected. The average CO ( J=2-1)/( J=1-0) line ratio is 0.77. The ratio is lower than this on the spiral arms and higher in the inter-arm regions. The arms show regularly spaced concentrations of molecular gas, Giant Molecular Associations (GMA's), whose masses are of the order  $10^7\,M_\odot$. The total molecular gas mass is estimated to be  $3.9\times 10^9\,M_\odot$. This mass is comparable to the total HI mass, but H 2 dominates in the optical disk. In the disk, H 2 and HI show very similar distributions, including small scale clumping. We compare the molecular gas distribution with those of other star formation tracers, such as B and H $\alpha$ images.


Key words: galaxies: individual: M 83; NGC 5236 -- galaxies: spiral -- galaxies: structure -- galaxies: ISM -- radio lines: galaxies -- galaxies: abundances

Offprint request: A. A. Lundgren, andreas@astro.su.se

SIMBAD Objects in preparation



© ESO 2004