NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2017A-0016

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Program Information for 2017A-0016


PI: Takeshi Oka, U. of Chicago, tozz@uchicago.edu
Address: Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 5640 SOUTH ELLIS AVENUE, CHICAGO, IL 60637 USA

CoI: Thomas R Geballe, Gemini Observatory
CoI: Miwa Goto, Max Planck Institut fuer extraterrestrische Physik
CoI: Nick Indriolo, U. of Michigan

Title: Probing the Galactic Center's Molecular Gas using H3+ and CO

Abstract: Our high-resolution spectra of H3+ and CO in the Galactic center from 2003 to 2010 using Phoenix at Gemini South radically altered the understanding of the distribution of gaseous environments in the Central Molecular Zone (CMZ) of the Galactic center. Those spectra used as background soources bright stars located in the central 30 pc of the CMZ to identify previously unknown and unsuspected long column lengths of warm outward flowing diffuse gas (at velocities up to 140 km/s) within the CMZ. In 2008, we began to seek new stars with featureless spectra which could be used by Phoenix as background sources to enlarge the region of observation of this gas to cover the full extent of the CMZ (+/-150 pc from the center). Unfortunately Phoenix portion of the project, which was initially highly successful, was disrupted by removal of Phoenix from Gemini in 2011, and then when Phoenix became available again in 2016A by poor weather. We thus resubmit (a modified version of) last year's proposal to observe H3+ and CO on sightlines which fill the large longitudinal gaps in our previous observations. The new observations will reveal the full extent of the warm and diffuse gas and will be a critical test of the global expansion interpretation of the motion of that gas.

Program Type: Standard/Galactic

Scheduled Nights:
Run 1 (2017A):  GEM-S-SVC/PHNX -- 27.3hrs band 3 (GS-2017A-Q-70)


National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360



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