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Session 73 - Spiral Galaxies.
Oral session, Thursday, June 11

[73.03] A Very Deep High Resolution X-ray Image of the Face-on Spiral M101

Q. D. Wang (Northwestern U.), R. Walterbos, D. Thilker (NMSU), R. Braun (NFRA)

With its face-on orientation and exceptionally low foreground absorption, the nearby spiral galaxy M101 is probably the best site for characterizing the overall properties of the hot ISM and its interplay with other galactic components. We have obtained a very deep (220 ks) ROSAT HRI image of the galaxy. This image, complemented by an archival PSPC observation and an extensive multi-wavelength database on the galaxy, allows for an unprecedented study of the hot ISM. We have detected many discrete sources to an X-ray luminosity limit of a few times 10^37 ergs s^-1, and have revealed a matrix of diffuse X-ray emission from galaxy. The diffuse emission correlates strongly with recent star formation regions, many of which resemble the 30 Doradus complex in the LMC. Some of soft X-ray emission peaks are apparently associated with HI supershells. These results have important implications for sequential massive star formation as well as the production, structure, and evolution of the hot ISM in a disk galaxy.

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Program listing for Thursday