AST/RO Observations of Atomic Carbon near the Galactic Center

Roopesh Ojha(1), Antony A. Stark(1), Henry H. Hsieh(1), Adair P. Lane(1), Richard A. Chamberlin(2), Thomas M. Bania(3), Alberto D. Bolatto(3), James M. Jackson(3), Gregory A. Wright(4)

(1) Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden St., MS 78; Cambridge MA 02138
(2) Caltech Submillimeter Obs., 111 Nowelo Street Hilo, HI 96720
(3) Astronomy Department, Boston University, 725 Commonwealth Avenue Boston, MA 02215
(4) Bell Laboratories, Holmdel, NJ 07733

Paper: ApJ, submitted

EPrint Server: astro-ph/0008439


We present a coarsely-sampled map of the region |l|<=2^o, |b|<= 0.1^o in the 492 GHz (3P_1->3P_0) fine structure transition of neutral carbon, observed with the Antarctic Submillimeter Telescope and Remote Observatory (AST/RO). The distribution of [\ionC1] emission is similar on the large scale to that of CO J=1->0. On average, the ratio of the integrated intensities, I_[C I]/I_12CO, is higher in the Galactic disk than in the Galactic Center region. This result is accounted for by the absorption of 12CO within the clouds located in the outer Galactic disk. I_[C I]/I_12CO is surprisingly uniform over the variety of environments near the Galactic Center. On average, [\ionC1] is optically thin (or as optically thin as 13CO (J=1->0)) even in the dense molecular clouds of the Galactic Center region.

Preprints available from the authors at , or the raw TeX (no figures) if you click here.

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