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Title: Neutral ISM, Ly α , and Lyman-continuum in the Nearby Starburst Haro 11

Abstract

Star-forming galaxies are believed to be a major source of Lyman continuum (LyC) radiation responsible for reionizing the early universe. Direct observations of escaping ionizing radiation have however been sparse and with low escape fractions. In the local universe, only 10 emitters have been observed, with typical escape fractions of a few percent. The mechanisms regulating this escape need to be strongly evolving with redshift in order to account for the epoch of reionization. Gas content and star formation feedback are among the main suspects, known to both regulate neutral gas coverage and evolve with cosmic time. In this paper, we reanalyze Hubble Space Telescope ( HST )-Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) spectrocopy of the first detected local LyC leaker, Haro 11. We examine the connection between LyC leakage and Ly α line shape, and feedback-influenced neutral interstellar medium (ISM) properties like kinematics and gas distribution. We discuss the two extremes of an optically thin, density bounded ISM and a riddled, optically thick, ionization bounded ISM, and how Haro 11 fits into theoretical predictions. We find that the most likely ISM model is a clumpy neutral medium embedded in a highly ionized medium with a combined covering fraction of unity andmore » a residual neutral gas column density in the ionized medium high enough to be optically thick to Ly α , but low enough to be at least partly transparent to LyC and undetected in Si ii. This suggests that star formation feedback and galaxy-scale interaction events play a major role in opening passageways for ionizing radiation through the neutral medium.« less

Authors:
; ; ;  [1]
  1. Department of Astronomy, Stockholm University, AlbaNova University Centre, SE-106 91 Stockholm (Sweden)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22661336
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Astrophysical Journal; Journal Volume: 837; Journal Issue: 1; Other Information: Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
79 ASTROPHYSICS, COSMOLOGY AND ASTRONOMY; DENSITY; DISTRIBUTION; FEEDBACK; FORECASTING; GALAXIES; INTERACTIONS; IONIZATION; IONIZING RADIATIONS; LYMAN LINES; RED SHIFT; SPACE; STAR EVOLUTION; STARS; TELESCOPES; UNIVERSE

Citation Formats

Rivera-Thorsen, T. Emil, Östlin, Göran, Hayes, Matthew, and Puschnig, Johannes, E-mail: trive@astro.su.se. Neutral ISM, Ly α , and Lyman-continuum in the Nearby Starburst Haro 11. United States: N. p., 2017. Web. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA5D0A.
Rivera-Thorsen, T. Emil, Östlin, Göran, Hayes, Matthew, & Puschnig, Johannes, E-mail: trive@astro.su.se. Neutral ISM, Ly α , and Lyman-continuum in the Nearby Starburst Haro 11. United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA5D0A.
Rivera-Thorsen, T. Emil, Östlin, Göran, Hayes, Matthew, and Puschnig, Johannes, E-mail: trive@astro.su.se. Wed . "Neutral ISM, Ly α , and Lyman-continuum in the Nearby Starburst Haro 11". United States. doi:10.3847/1538-4357/AA5D0A.
@article{osti_22661336,
title = {Neutral ISM, Ly α , and Lyman-continuum in the Nearby Starburst Haro 11},
author = {Rivera-Thorsen, T. Emil and Östlin, Göran and Hayes, Matthew and Puschnig, Johannes, E-mail: trive@astro.su.se},
abstractNote = {Star-forming galaxies are believed to be a major source of Lyman continuum (LyC) radiation responsible for reionizing the early universe. Direct observations of escaping ionizing radiation have however been sparse and with low escape fractions. In the local universe, only 10 emitters have been observed, with typical escape fractions of a few percent. The mechanisms regulating this escape need to be strongly evolving with redshift in order to account for the epoch of reionization. Gas content and star formation feedback are among the main suspects, known to both regulate neutral gas coverage and evolve with cosmic time. In this paper, we reanalyze Hubble Space Telescope ( HST )-Cosmic Origins Spectrograph (COS) spectrocopy of the first detected local LyC leaker, Haro 11. We examine the connection between LyC leakage and Ly α line shape, and feedback-influenced neutral interstellar medium (ISM) properties like kinematics and gas distribution. We discuss the two extremes of an optically thin, density bounded ISM and a riddled, optically thick, ionization bounded ISM, and how Haro 11 fits into theoretical predictions. We find that the most likely ISM model is a clumpy neutral medium embedded in a highly ionized medium with a combined covering fraction of unity and a residual neutral gas column density in the ionized medium high enough to be optically thick to Ly α , but low enough to be at least partly transparent to LyC and undetected in Si ii. This suggests that star formation feedback and galaxy-scale interaction events play a major role in opening passageways for ionizing radiation through the neutral medium.},
doi = {10.3847/1538-4357/AA5D0A},
journal = {Astrophysical Journal},
number = 1,
volume = 837,
place = {United States},
year = {Wed Mar 01 00:00:00 EST 2017},
month = {Wed Mar 01 00:00:00 EST 2017}
}
  • We present the first robust detection of H i 21 cm emission in the blue compact galaxy Haro 11 using the 100 m Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope (GBT). Haro 11 is a luminous blue compact galaxy with emission in both Ly α and the Lyman continuum. We detect (5.1 ± 0.7 × 10{sup 8}) M {sub ⊙} of H i gas at an assumed distance of 88 Mpc, making this galaxy H i deficient compared to other local galaxies with similar optical properties. Given this small H i mass, Haro 11 has an elevated M{sub H2}/ M{sub Hi} ratio and a verymore » low gas fraction compared to most local galaxies, and contains twice as much mass in ionized hydrogen as in neutral hydrogen. The H i emission has a linewidth of 71 km s{sup −}1 and is offset 60 km s{sup −1} redward of the optical line center. It is undergoing a starburst after a recent merger that has elevated the star formation rate, and will deplete the gas supply in <0.2 Gyr. Although this starburst has elevated the star formation rate (SFR) compared to galaxies with similar H i masses and line widths, Haro 11 matches a trend of lower gas fractions toward higher SFRs and is below the general trend of increasing H i mass with increasing luminosity. Taken together, our results paint Haro 11 as a standard low-mass galaxy that is undergoing an unusually efficient star formation episode.« less
  • Identifying the mechanism by which high-energy Lyman continuum (LyC) photons escaped from early galaxies is one of the most pressing questions in cosmic evolution. Haro 11 is the best known local LyC-leaking galaxy, providing an important opportunity to test our understanding of LyC escape. The observed LyC emission in this galaxy presumably originates from one of the three bright, photoionizing knots known as A, B, and C. It is known that Knot C has strong Ly α emission, and Knot B hosts an unusually bright ultraluminous X-ray source, which may be a low-luminosity active galactic nucleus. To clarify the LyCmore » source, we carry out ionization-parameter mapping (IPM) by obtaining narrow-band imaging from the Hubble Space Telescope WFC3 and ACS cameras to construct spatially resolved ratio maps of [O iii]/[O ii] emission from the galaxy. IPM traces the ionization structure of the interstellar medium and allows us to identify optically thin regions. To optimize the continuum subtraction, we introduce a new method for determining the best continuum scale factor derived from the mode of the continuum-subtracted, image flux distribution. We find no conclusive evidence of LyC escape from Knots B or C, but instead we identify a high-ionization region extending over at least 1 kpc from Knot A. This knot shows evidence of an extremely young age (≲1 Myr), perhaps containing very massive stars (>100 M {sub ⊙}). It is weak in Ly α , so if it is confirmed as the LyC source, our results imply that LyC emission may be independent of Ly α emission.« less
  • The radiance line ratios Ly-β/Ly-α, Ly-γ/Ly-α, Ly-δ/Ly-α, and Ly-ε/Ly-α for soft X-ray emission following charge exchange (CX) between C 6+ and Kr are reported in this paper for collision energies between approximately 320 and 46,000 eV/u. The corresponding collision velocities (250–3000 km/s) are characteristic of the solar wind. X-ray spectra were obtained at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory Multicharged Ion Research Facility using a microcalorimeter X-ray detector with a resolution on the order of 10 eV FWHM. The measured Ly-ε/Ly-α is zero for all considered energies and suggests that very little, if any, capture to 6p occurs. The measured Ly-β/Ly-αmore » and Ly-γ/Ly-α ratios intersect and form a well resolved node around (950 ± 50) km/s, which could be used as an astrophysical velocity indicative tool. The results reported here are compared to calculations for C 6+ + H since no published theory for C 6+ + Kr is known to exist. Finally, double-electron-capture (DEC) and other multi-electron processes are possible. True double capture is estimated to be only 10% of the single-electron-capture (SEC).« less
  • We present new H I imaging and spectroscopy of the 14 UV-selected star-forming galaxies in the Lyman Alpha Reference Sample (LARS), aimed for a detailed study of the processes governing the production, propagation, and escape of Lyα photons. New H I spectroscopy, obtained with the 100 m Green Bank Telescope (GBT), robustly detects the H I spectral line in 11 of the 14 observed LARS galaxies (although the profiles of two of the galaxies are likely confused by other sources within the GBT beam); the three highest redshift galaxies are not detected at our current sensitivity limits. The GBT profilesmore » are used to derive fundamental H I line properties of the LARS galaxies. We also present new pilot H I spectral line imaging of five of the LARS galaxies obtained with the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA). This imaging localizes the H I gas and provides a measurement of the total H I mass in each galaxy. In one system, LARS 03 (UGC 8335 or Arp 238), VLA observations reveal an enormous tidal structure that extends over 160 kpc from the main interacting systems and that contains >10{sup 9} M {sub ☉} of H I. We compare various H I properties with global Lyα quantities derived from Hubble Space Telescope measurements. The measurements of the Lyα escape fraction are coupled with the new direct measurements of H I mass and significantly disturbed H I velocities. Our robustly detected sample reveals tentative correlations between the total H I mass and linewidth, and key Lyα tracers. Further, on global scales, these data support a complex coupling between Lyα propagation and the H I properties of the surrounding medium.« less