Star formation and dust heating in the FIR bright sources of M83

Foyle, K., Natale, G., Wilson, C. D., Popescu, Cristina orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-7866-702X, Baes, M., Bendo, G. J., Boquien, M., Boselli, A., Cooray, A. et al (2013) Star formation and dust heating in the FIR bright sources of M83. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, 432 (3). pp. 2182-2207. ISSN 0035-8711

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We investigate star formation and dust heating in the compact far-infrared (FIR) bright sources detected in the Herschel maps of M83. We use the source extraction code GETSOURCES to detect and extract sources in the FIR, as well as their photometry in the mid-infrared and Hα. By performing infrared spectral energy distribution fitting and applying an Hα-based star formation rate (SFR) calibration, we derive the dust masses and temperatures, SFRs, gas masses and star formation efficiencies (SFEs). The detected sources lie exclusively on the spiral arms and represent giant molecular associations, with gas masses and sizes of 106-108 M⊙ and 200-300 pc, respectively. The inferred parameters show little to no radial dependence and there is only a weak correlation between the SFRs and gas masses, which suggests that more massive clouds are less efficient at forming stars. Dust heating is mainly due to local star formation. However, although the sources are not optically thick, the total intrinsic young stellar population luminosity can almost completely account for the dust luminosity. This suggests that other radiation sources also contribute to the dust heating and approximately compensate for the unabsorbed fraction of UV light. © 2013 The Authors Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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