A large-scale CO survey of the galactic center

Tomoharu Oka, Tetsuo Hasegawa, Fumio Sato, Masato Tsuboi, Atsushi Miyazaki

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188 Citations (Scopus)


We present high-resolution CO images of the Galactic center region taken with the 2 × 2 focal-plane array receiver mounted on the 45 m telescope of Nobeyama Radio Observatory. We have collected about 44,000 12C16O (J = 1-0) spectra and over 13,000 13C16O (J = 1-0) spectra with a 34″ (1.4 pc) grid spacing. The 12CO mapping area is roughly - 1°.5 ≤ l ≤ + 3°.4 and -0°.6 ≤ b ≤ +0°.6, which covers almost the full extent of the molecular gas concentration in the Galactic center. These CO images demonstrate extremely complex distribution and kinematics of molecular gas in the Galactic center. While its large-scale behavior can be attributed to the well-known coherent features, bright CO emission arises from a number of compact (d ≤ 10 pc) clouds with large velocity widths (ΔV ≥ 30 km s-1). The small-scale structure of molecular gas is characterized by filaments, arcs, and shells. The boisterous molecular gas kinematics there may be a result of violent release of kinetic energy by a number of supernova explosions and/or Wolf-Rayet stellar winds.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)455-515
Number of pages61
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1998 Oct
Externally publishedYes


  • Galaxy: center
  • Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics
  • ISM: molecules
  • Surveys

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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