Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 451, 196-209 (2015/July-3)
Structure analysis of simulated molecular clouds with the Δ-variance.
BERTRAM E., KLESSEN R.S. and GLOVER S.C.O.
Abstract (from CDS):
We employ the Δ-variance analysis and study the turbulent gas dynamics of simulated molecular clouds (MCs). Our models account for a simplified treatment of time-dependent chemistry and the non-isothermal nature of the gas. We investigate simulations using three different initial mean number densities of n0 = 30, 100 and 300/cm3 that span the range of values typical for MCs in the solar neighbourhood. Furthermore, we model the CO line emission in a post-processing step using a radiative transfer code. We evaluate Δ-variance spectra for centroid velocity (CV) maps as well as for integrated intensity and column density maps for various chemical components: the total, H2 and 12CO number density and the integrated intensity of both the 12CO and 13CO (J = 1 -> 0) lines. The spectral slopes of the Δ-variance computed on the CV maps for the total and H2 number density are significantly steeper compared to the different CO tracers. We find slopes for the linewidth-size relation ranging from 0.4 to 0.7 for the total and H2 density models, while the slopes for the various CO tracers range from 0.2 to 0.4 and underestimate the values for the total and H2 density by a factor of 1.5-3.0. We demonstrate that optical depth effects can significantly alter the Δ-variance spectra. Furthermore, we report a critical density threshold of ∼ 100/cm3 at which the Δ-variance slopes of the various CO tracers change sign. We thus conclude that carbon monoxide traces the total cloud structure well only if the average cloud density lies above this limit.