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Session 51 - New Views of the Magellanic Clouds - I.
Oral session, Wednesday, June 12
With the availability of the Swedish-ESO-Submillimetre Telescope (SEST), it has been possible to produce meaningful maps of CO emission from the Magellanic Clouds. At the distance of the LMC, the resolution at 2.6 mm, the wavelength of the CO(J=1-0) line, corresponds to a linear dimension of 10 pc. Observations of CO in the Magellanic Clouds have been done as a Key Programme on the SEST, and as such has been using approximately 40 half days per year of observing time since 1988. The goal of the Key Programme was to produce fully sampled maps of CO emisssion from several representative areas in the LMC and SMC.
The scientific questions addressed by the Key Programme were as follows:
1. What is the nature of the molecular emission from the Magellanic Clouds? Does the emission come from well defined clouds, as in the Milky Way, or is there extensive low level emission?
2. If there are well defined clouds what are their size distributions?
3. What are the cloud masses?
4. How is the conversion from CO luminosity to cloud mass affected by the low metallicity of the Magellanic Clouds?
5. What is the morphology of the star forming regions?
In this talk, I will discuss the CO observations of the LMC, with particular emphasis on two regions: a dark cloud complex extending about 2 kpc south of 30 Dor, and (2) the vicinity of the N11 HII region.
Program listing for Wednesday