Cold gas kinematics in an spiral Galaxy at = 0.437: The nature of Damped Lyman-α absorbers
Kapteyn Astronomical Institute, PO Box 800, 9700 AV Groningen, The Netherlands
2 ASTRON, PO Box 2, 7990 AA, Dwingeloo, The Netherlands
Corresponding author: F. H. Briggs, email@example.com
Accepted: 24 April 2001
Westerbork Radio Synthesis Telescope observations of the redshifted 21 cm line absorber against the double lobed quasar 3C 196 show that the intervening absorber is an spiral galaxy (3C 196-G1) and that the absorbing layer of cold gas extends to radii of at least 30 kpc. The new data solve several long standing puzzles about this system by (1) discovering a second 21 cm absorption feature, corresponding to absorption against the NE lobe of the background radio source and (2) spatially "resolving" the two absorption features to isolate the absorption along the two lines of sight to the opposing radio lobes. These findings resolve the disagreement in redshift between the UV metal and 21 cm lines, and as well as demonstrating that the neutral layer does absorb both lobes of the background radio source. Simple kinematic models with an inclined, rotating gas disk match the observed 21 cm profile and are also compatible with both the redshift and velocity spread of the absorption measured in UV resonance lines along a third, independent line of sight to the quasar nucleus and with the lack of 21 cm absorption in as earlier VLBI experiment that was sensitive to opacity against the hot spot in the northern lobe. The inferred rotation speed and luminosity for the galaxy are compatible with the Tully-Fisher Relation. This system illustrates well how 21 cm absorption against extended background radio sources is a powerful tool in determining the nature of the damped Lyman-α class of QSO absorption line system.
Key words: galaxies: active / galaxies: evolution / galaxies: interaction / radio lines: galaxies
© ESO, 2001