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Date and Time of the Query: 2019-06-17 T19:06:36 PDT
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For refcode 2002AJ....124.2548J:
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Copyright by American Astronomical Society. Reproduced by permission
2002AJ....124.2548J THE SOURCE OF FAR-INFRARED RADIATION IN SPIRAL GALAXIES LAUREN V. JONES AND RICHARD J. ELSTON Department of Astronomy, University of Florida, P.O. Box 112055, Gainesville, FL 32611 AND DEIDRE A. HUNTER Lowell Observatory, 1400 West Mars Hill Road, Flagstaff, AZ 86001 Received 2001 August 21; accepted 2002 August 5 ABSTRACT We present the results of an extensive multiwavelength investigation of the source of far-infrared radiation in eight Sab-Sd galaxies using Br{gamma} ({lambda} = 2.165 microns) as a tracer of star formation. In this analysis, we take into account extinction, using several recombination lines of hydrogen to assess extinction in each region analyzed. We compare these results with results of previous studies of this type. We find that using Br{gamma} as a tracer of star formation, rather than the more commonly used H{alpha} ({lambda} = 0.6563 microns) recombination line of hydrogen, yields more reliable results. We also compare the results found when using a global extinction of 1.1 mag with the results found using an assessment of extinction for each region and find that extinction must be assessed for each region. Finally, we use Starburst99 stellar models to perform an energy balance analysis that allows us to determine the most probable source of the far-infrared radiation. Our results indicate that the source of the far-infrared radiation is the youngest stellar population, indicating that far-infrared radiation can be used as a tracer of star formation. We also find that the dominant heating population is independent of far-infrared color temperature. Key words: galaxies: formation - galaxies: ISM - galaxies: spiral - infrared radiation - stars: formation
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