The Spitzer/GLIMPSE Surveys: A New View of the Milky Way

Type Journal Article
Names Ed Churchwell, Brian L. Babler, Marilyn R. Meade, Barbara A. Whitney, Robert Benjamin, Remy Indebetouw, Claudia Cyganowski, Thomas P. Robitaille, Matthew Povich, Christer Watson, Steve Bracker
Publication Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Volume 121
Issue 877
Pages 213-230
Date March 1, 2009
Short Title The Spitzer/GLIMPSE Surveys
Library Catalog NASA ADS
Abstract A brief description is given of the GLIMPSE surveys, including the areas surveyed, sensitivity limits, and products. The primary motivations for this review are to describe some of the main scientific results enabled by the GLIMPSE surveys and to note potential future applications of the GLIMPSE catalogs and images. In particular, we discuss contributions to our understanding of star formation and early evolution, the interstellar medium, galactic structure, and evolved stars. Infrared dark clouds (IRDCs), young stellar objects (YSOs), and infrared bubbles/H II regions are discussed in some detail. A probable triggered star formation associated with expanding infrared bubbles is briefly mentioned. The distribution and morphologies of dust and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) in the interstellar medium are discussed. Examples are shown from GLIMPSE images of bow shocks, pillars (elephant trunks), and instabilities in massive star-formation regions. The infrared extinction law of diffuse interstellar dust is discussed. The large-scale structure of the Galaxy has been traced by red-clump giants using the GLIMPSE point-source catalog to reveal the radius and orientation of the central bar, the stellar radial scale length, an obvious increase in star counts toward the tangency to the Scutum-Centaurus spiral arm, the lack of an obvious tangency from star counts toward the Sagittarius spiral arm, and a sharp increase in star counts toward the nuclear bulge. Recent results on evolved stars and some serendipitous discoveries are mentioned. More than 70 refereed papers have been published based on GLIMPSE data as of 2008 November.
Tags IYA Review
UW-Madison Astronomy Home