Correlating vertical velocities of ionized interstellar medium to star formation rates in nearby face-on spiral galaxies

Type Conference Paper
Names Christina Ketchum, Stephen Tufte, Mathew Bershady, David Andersen
Proceedings Title APS Meeting Abstracts, abstract #B5.010
Conference Name 10th Annual Meeting of the Northwest Section of APS, May 15-17, 2008
Date May 1, 2008
Library Catalog NASA ADS
Abstract We present observations of the ionized interstellar medium of 39 face-on spiral galaxies obtained with the WIYN 3.5-m telescope coupled to the Sparsepak integral field unit. We investigate the relationship between the vertical motions of the gas, as measured from the H-alpha line-widths, and the local star formation activity, traced by the H-alpha intensity. Several trends were found: 1) there exists a threshold H-alpha intensity below which the line-width is uncorrelated with the star formation activity and is presumably dominated by other thermal and turbulent processes 2) above this threshold many galaxies exhibit a strong positive correlation between the H-alpha line width and intensity and 3) even higher H-alpha intensities demonstrated a secondary trend line, in which the intensity leveled-off with increasing H-alpha line-width.
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