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Trey Wenger (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Trey Wenger colloquium: Galactic HII regions, diffuse ionised gas, and structure in the Milky Way

The Australia Telescope National Facility Colloquium
15:00-16:00 Wed 08 Mar 2023



Radio recombination lines (RRLs) are an unobscured tracer of ionized
gas in both the diffuse interstellar medium (ISM) as well as high-mass
star-forming regions. The HII Region Discovery Surveys (HRDS) have
nearly tripled the number of known high-mass star-forming regions
in the Milky Way by detecting RRL emission toward infrared-identified
HII region candidates. HII regions are the classic tracer of structure
in galaxies, and their physical conditions (e.g., metallicity,
internal kinematics) inform models of high-mass star formation and
Galactic chemodynamical evolution. I will give a brief overview of our
latest Australia Telescope Compact Array project, the Southern HII
Region Discovery Survey, and some preliminary results with the first
Galaxy-wide flux-limited HII region sample, including a novel
technique to constrain the Milky Way morphological structure. We
serendipitously discovered (1) a population of HII regions with
ionized gas velocity gradients and (2) RRL emission from diffuse
ionized gas. I will discuss these discoveries, their implications, and
our follow-up work, which will inform both models of high-mass star
formation as well as our understanding of the ISM and Galactic


Vivek Gupta

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