Published in "The Interstellar Medium in Galaxies", eds. H. A. Thronson, Jr. and J. M. Shull, 1990.


THE COOL PHASE OF THE INTERSTELLAR MEDIUM: ATOMIC GAS

Elias Brinks


Royal Greenwich Observatory and National Radio Astronomy Observatory


Abstract. The purpose of this review is to discuss high resolution HI observations of a sample of nearby galaxies and to explain what they can teach us about the composition, structure and energy balance of the Interstellar Medium or ISM. The first part presents a summary of what is known about the ISM of the Galaxy and is followed by an overview of the current theoretical models. It continues by showing that it has become feasible to extend studies of the local ISM to nearby spirals, thus avoiding the well known problems associated with Galactic studies such as distance ambiguities and line of sight confusion. The second part is devoted to a discussion of the individual galaxies, addressing both the global properties of the ISM as well as its detailed structure, focussing on the properties of HI shells and supershells.


Table of Contents

INTRODUCTION

BASIC RADIATIVE TRANSFER

HIGH RESOLUTION IMAGING FACILITIES

THE STRUCTURE OF THE INTERSTELLAR MEDIUM OF THE GALAXY
The Composition of the ISM
The Structure and Phases of the ISM
Models Describing the ISM

THE ISM IN NEARBY GALAXIES
The Magellanic Clouds
Messier 31
Messier 33
IC10 and IC1613
M101 and NGC 6946
Edge-on Galaxies

FORWARD LOOK

REFERENCES

For a postscript version of the article, click here.

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