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Millimetre and submillimetre molecular line observations of the reflection nebula NGC 2023

By Glenn J. White, Carl Sanderson, T. S. Monteiro, K. J. Richardson and S. S. Hayashi


Observations in the CO <i>J</i> = 2 - 1, CO <i>J</i> = 3 - 2 and HCO<sup>+</sup> J = 4 - 3 transitions of the molecular cloud associated with NGC 2023 are presented. The observations reveal the complex structure of the gas in the surrounding cloud, and show the presence of several hot-spots which may represent separate bodies of gas. A search has been made for the source of excitation of two nearby groups of Herbig-Haro objects recently discovered by Malin et al. (1987). No such objects can be clearly identified from the data. CO <i>J</i> = 3 - 2 spectra taken at positions lying on the CO J = 1 - 0 shell observed by Gatley et al. (1987) show marked enhancements in peak line strength relative to coincident CO <i>J</i> = 2 - 1 data. By contrast, no such enhancements are observed away from the shell. Observations of the submillimeter wavelength HCO<sup>+</sup> <i>J</i> = 4 - 3 transition show that the line strength is greatest in the vicinity of the shell structure. Simple large velocity gradient modeling of the excitation conditions of the shell material suggests that the gas may be hot (<i>T</i><sub>kin</sub> ~ 140 K), dense, and optically thin

Year: 1990
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Provided by: Open Research Online

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