Offsets of masers with respect to the middle of the Perseus arm and the corotation radius in the Milky Way.
Abstract (from CDS):
The radial distance to the corotation radius Rcoro (where the angular speed of the gas and stars, Ωgas, in orbit around the Galactic center (GC) is equal to the angular speed of the spiral arm pattern, Ωsp) has often been predicted (at various places), but not measured with high precision. Here we test the locations of masers with respect to the Perseus arm (Table 1). Our analysis of the masers and H II regions near the Perseus arm (mostly located on the inner arm side, by about 0.4 ± 0.1 kpc from the cold CO mid-arm) shows that the corotation Rcoro must be >10.8 kpc from the GC (Figure 1). This implies that the angular rotation speed of the spiral pattern Ωsp< 21.3 km s–1 kpc–1. Another test in Galactic quadrant II shows that the radial velocity of the masers is generally more negative than that of the CO mid-arm (Figure 2), indicating a deceleration with respect to the CO mid-arm, by about 9 ± 3 km s–1. This implies that Ωsp < 20.7 km s–1 kpc–1, and thus Rcoro > 11.1 kpc. Finally, comparing our results with other published results (Table 2), we find a statistical mean corotation radius Rcoro predicted to be near 12 ± 1 kpc from the GC (beyond the Perseus arm; before the Cygnus arm), and a mean angular spiral pattern speed, Ωsp, predicted to be near 19 ± 2 km s–1 kpc–1.