AAS Meeting #194 - Chicago, Illinois, May/June 1999
Session 84. Studying the Anatomy of the Milky Way
Display, Thursday, June 3, 1999, 9:20am-4:00pm, Southwest Exhibit Hall

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[84.03] Observations of the Galactic Center with NICMOS, the AAT, and the VLA: Evidence for the Interaction of Sgr A East and the Circumnuclear Disk

S. R. Stolovy (U. Arizona), F. Yusef-Zadeh (Northwestern University), M. Burton (U. New South Wales), M. Wardle (U. Sydney), G. Rieke (U. Arizona), J. Lazio, N.E. Kassim (NRL), D. A. Roberts (U. Illinois)

We present a synthesis of recent observations of the inner few parsecs of the Galaxy with NICMOS/HST, UNSWIRF on the AAT, and the VLA. These include H2 and [FeII] narrow-band images, OH (1720 MHz) maser observations, and radio continuum measurements. These observations suggest that the outer edge of the Circumnuclear Disk (CND) is collisionally excited whereas the inner edge is likely to be heated predominantly by the IRS 16 cluster. Subarcsecond resolution images in H2 reveal new linear features: one outlining the outer, northwestern edge of the CND and another appearing to extend from beyond the CND towards a highly disturbed region where the Northern Arm intersects the CND. Highly extincted regions are also imaged near the inner edge of the CND. The kinematic and spatial correlation of H2 and OH (1720 MHz) as well as the spatial distribution of radio continuum emission at 90cm suggest that Sgr A East is interacting with and shocking the CND.

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