A study of the turbulence of the neutral medium in two nearby spiral galaxies

Brignoli, Francesco (2016) A study of the turbulence of the neutral medium in two nearby spiral galaxies. [Laurea magistrale], Università di Bologna, Corso di Studio in Astrofisica e cosmologia [LM-DM270]
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The width of the 21 cm line (HI) emitted by spiral galaxies depends on the physical processes that release energy in the Interstellar Medium (ISM). This quantity is called velocity dispersion (σ) and it is proportional first of all to the thermal kinetic energy of the gas. The accepted theoretical picture predicts that the neutral hydrogen component (HI) exists in the ISM in two stable phases: a cold one (CNM, with σ~0.8 km/s) and a warm one (WNM, with σ~8 km/s). However, this is called into question by the observation that the HI gas has usually larger velocity dispersions. This suggests the presence of turbulence in the ISM, although the energy sources remain unknown. In this thesis we want to shed new light on this topic. We have studied the HI line emission of two nearby galaxies: NGC6946 and M101. For the latter we used new deep observations obtained with the Westerbork radio interferometer. Through a gaussian fitting procedure, we produced dispersion maps of the two galaxies. For both of them, we compared the σ values measured in the spiral arms with those in the interarms. In NGC6946 we found that, in both arms and interarms, σ grows with the column density, while we obtained the opposite for M 101. Using a statistical analysis we did not find a significant difference between arm and interarm dispersion distributions. Producing star formation rate density maps (SFRD) of the galaxies, we studied their global and local relations with the HI kinetic energy, as inferred from the measured dispersions. For NGC6946 we obtained a good log-log correlation, in agreement with a simple model of supernova feedback driven turbulence. This shows that in this galaxy turbulent motions are mainly induced by the stellar activity. For M 101 we did not find an analogous correlation, since the gas kinetic energy appears constant with the SFRD. We think that this may indicate that in this galaxy turbulence is driven also by accretion of extragalactic material.

Tipologia del documento
Tesi di laurea (Laurea magistrale)
Autore della tesi
Brignoli, Francesco
Relatore della tesi
Correlatore della tesi
Corso di studio
Ordinamento Cds
Parole chiave
galaxies ISM turbulence NGC6946 M101
Data di discussione della Tesi
18 Marzo 2016

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