Star formation in Galactic spiral arms and the interarm regions

D.J. Eden, T.J.T. Moore, L.K. Morgan, M.A. Thompson, J.S. Urquhart

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The line of sight through the Galactic plane between longitudes l = 37deg.83 and 42deg.50 allows for the separation of Galactic Ring Survey molecular clouds into those that fall within the spiral arms and those located in the interarm regions. By matching these clouds in both position and velocity with dense clumps detected in the mm continuum by the Bolocam Galactic Plane Survey, we are able to look for changes in the clump formation efficiency (CFE), the ratio of clump to cloud mass, with Galactic environment. We find no evidence of any difference in the CFE between the interarm and spiral-arm regions along this line of sight. This is further evidence that, outside the Galactic Centre region, the large-scale structures of the Galaxy play little part in changing the dense, potentially star-forming structures within molecular clouds.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1587-1595
Number of pages9
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 11 May 2013


  • stars: formation, ISM: clouds, Galaxy: kinematics and dynamics


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