Constraints on the Orbit of High Velocity Cloud Complex A
American Astronomical Society, AAS Meeting #221, #254.23
Published in Jan 2013
Galactic high-velocity clouds are generally thought to be circum-galactic clouds of neutral hydrogen gas orbiting the Milky Way at distances of a few to a few hundred kiloparsecs from the disk of the Milky Way. Recent efforts to bracket the distances to these clouds via searches for optical/ultraviolet absorption lines in the spectra of distant halo stars have led to new distances limits for many of the larger cloud "complexes". This advance allows for the calculation of more secure orbits for these clouds, with orbital estimates now available for the Magellanic Stream, GCN (Galactic Center Negative) complex, GCP (Galactic Center Positive, or Smith Cloud) complex, and Complex H. We present new constraints on the trajectory of high velocity cloud Complex A, matching the distance constraints, the radial velocity and gradient in the radial velocity. The dependence of these orbital parameters on the section of the complex matched, the model potential, tidal disruption, and drag forces are all presented. This work was partially supported by the National Science Foundation's REU program through NSF Award AST-1004881 and NASA Astrophysical Theory program award NNX10AI70G.
(c) 2013: American Astronomical Society