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The molecular complexes in Orion
Kutner, M. L.; Tucker, K. D.; Chin, G.; Thaddeus, P.
AA(NASA, Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, N.Y.), AB(NASA, Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York; Fordham University, Bronx, N.Y.), AC(Columbia University, New York, N.Y.), AD(NASA, Goddard Institute for Space Studies, New York, N.Y.)
Astrophysical Journal, Part 1, vol. 215, July 15, 1977, p. 521-528. (ApJ Homepage)
Publication Date:
NASA/STI Keywords:
Carbon Monoxide, Interstellar Gas, Line Spectra, Molecular Gases, Nebulae, Radio Sources (Astronomy), Angular Velocity, B Stars, Galactic Rotation, Interstellar Chemistry, Molecular Spectra, O Stars, Star Clusters
Bibliographic Code:


Line emission from CO at 2.6 mm is observed over an area of 28 square degrees in the Orion region. Most of the emission comes from two giant molecular complexes, roughly associated with Ori B and Ori A. The latter provides the best example of a giant molecular complex at the end of a sequence of OB association subgroups of decreasing age. This complex is apparently rotating with an angular velocity 4.5 by 10 to the -15th power per sec, but in a direction opposed to the Galactic rotation. The apparently denser parts of the cloud are rotating at a somewhat greater angular velocity. The total mass of the molecular gas derived from the observations is 200,000 solar masses, implying that roughly half the matter in this region is in the form of molecular hydrogen.

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