Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 371, 1550-1558 (2006/October-1)
Discovery of large-scale methanol and hydroxyl maser filaments in W3(OH).
HARVEY-SMITH L. and COHEN R.J.
Abstract (from CDS):
Images of the 6.7-GHz methanol maser emission from W3(OH) made at 50- and 100-mas angular resolution with the Multi-Element Radio-Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN) are presented. The masers lie across the western face of the ultracompact Hii region in extended filaments which may trace large-scale shocks. There is a complex interrelation between the 6.7-GHz methanol masers and hydroxyl (OH) masers at 1.7 and 4.7 GHz. Together the two species trace an extended filamentary structure that stretches at least 3100 au across the face of the ultracompact Hii region. The dominant 6.7-GHz methanol emission coincides with the radio continuum peak and is populated by masers with broad spectral lines. The 6.7-GHz methanol emission is elongated at position angle 50° with a strong velocity gradient, and bears many similarities to the methanol maser disc structure reported in NGC 7538. It is surrounded by arcs of ground state OH masers at 1.7 GHz and highly excited OH masers at 13.44 GHz, some of which have the brightest methanol masers at their focus. We suggest that this region hosts the excitation centre for the ultracompact Hii region.