AAS 197, January 2001
Session 110. AGN Emission and Absorption Properties
Display, Thursday, January 11, 2001, 9:30-4:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[110.07] The Interplay of the Star Formation and the Molecular Gas within Circumnuclear Starburst Rings

E. Schinnerer, N.Z. Scoville (Caltech), L.A. Moustakas (Univ. of Oxford)

We started a multi-wavelength study to investigate the dynamical interplay between the molecular gas and the star forming regions within starburst rings combining OVRO mm-interferometry with NIR integral field spectroscopy. Recent NIR observations indicate a time sequence in the star forming history within starburst rings. Comparison to the molecular gas kinematics allows to test if this is related to dynamical processes forming the ring. Understanding of the starburst rings is essential since these rings contribute substantially to the bolometric luminosity of their host galaxies. So far, we obtained ~ 1'' resolution mm-interferometric data for NGC 7771 and NGC 4303. In both cases the molecular gas is gathered in a ring-like distribution with diameters of about 1 kpc. However, NGC 4303 seems to be in an earlier evolutionary stage as NGC 7771, since large amounts of the molecular gas are still located outside the ring along its stellar bar. We also present first result of the analysis of the Near-IR integral field data of NGC 7771 obtained in September using PIFS at the Palomar 200-inch telescope. The combination of the stellar absorption lines in the H and K band together with the H and He recombination lines are used to age-date the individual star forming region within the starburst ring utilizing population synthesis in conjunction with NIR spectral synthesis.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: es@astro.caltech.edu

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