Gas and dust in nearby edge-on spiral NGC 891

Here’s a sneak preview of my recent results on NGC 891.

Next week, I am participating in The Universe Explored By Herschel symposium, held at ESA-ESTEC in Noordwijk, The Netherlands. The program, focusing on the scientific breakthroughs based on Herschel observations, looks enticingly packed so I’m posting a copy of my poster contribution now whilst I’ve a few minutes to spare.

I’m presenting the work from my paper in preparation, entitled “Resolved analysis of gas and dust in the nearby edge-on spiral NGC 891”. I combine Herschel PACS/SPIRE with JCMT SCUBA images to trace the FIR/submm SED, then fit modified black body models on a pixel-by-pixel basis to produce maps of the dust mass and temperature. Although NGC 891 is a very well studied galaxy, mostly due to it’s proximity and nearly perfect edge-on inclination, this is the first time we’ve been able to map out the cold dust distribution in detail because most previous FIR experiments lacked the resolution to produce these sort of maps. It has been interesting to see how my results compare with those observations from the literature. I’ve also had a look at the relationships between the cold dust and gas, traced by HI 21 cm and CO (J=1-0) maps, finding strong correlations between the dust and total gas (i.e. atomic plus molecular plus contributions for helium and heavy metals) in the disk. Check out the poster below for more details.

Background image credit – I stupidly forgot to give credit on the poster for the beautiful background image. The original image was taken at Capella Observatory, and I strongly recommend checking out the other nice images on their website. My thanks go to Dr. Stefan Binnewies of Capella Observatory for giving permission to use the image.

Coincidentally, NGC 891 also features on todays Astronomy Picture of the Day.

Grab a copy of the pdf by clicking the image.

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