Kinematics and dynamics of molecular gas in galactic centers

K. Sakamoto
2013 Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union  
The central molecular zone (CMZ) in the central half kpc of the Milky Way is a massive concentration of molecular gas in the center of a barred spiral galaxy. Current and past activities in the Galactic center include the formation of massive stars/clusters, AGN feeding, and feedback. At the same time, observations of molecular gas in external galaxies show that many disk galaxies have similar condensations of molecular gas in their central kpc or so. They also have CMZs, or nuclear molecular
more » ... nuclear molecular rings or concentrations in more common terms among extragalactic observers. The formation of the CMZs are often, but not always, related to stellar bars. The centers of nearby galaxies can provide valuable information on the general properties of galactic centers and CMZs through comparative studies of multiple galactic centers of different characteristics from various viewing angles. Linear resolutions achieved toward nearby extragalactic CMZs with modern radio interferometers are now comparable to those achieved toward the Galactic CMZ with small single-dish telescopes. I review and present work on the formation mechanism and properties of the CMZs in external galaxies with some comparisons with the CMZ of our Galaxy.
doi:10.1017/s1743921314000453 fatcat:3v5jixhmerh4tiyhogzqsfsw3u