AAS 207th Meeting, 8-12 January 2006
Session 164 Extra-galactic ISM - Near to Far
Oral, Wednesday, 2:00-3:30pm, January 11, 2006, Balcony A

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[164.02] Giant Molecular Clouds in Andromeda

E. Rosolowsky (Center for Astrophysics)

We present BIMA 12CO(1\to 0) observations of Giant Molecular Clouds (GMCs) in a spiral arm of M31. We analyzed the observations using methods designed to minimize observational biases in extragalactic observations so that the results can be compared to similar studies in the Milky Way. We find that the properties of individual clouds are indistinguishable from those found in the Milky Way and M33. Moreover, the mass distribution of clouds appears similar to that found in the inner Milky Way, in contrast with M33 where the mass is significantly steeper. The GMCs in M31 are associated with high column density atomic gas gathered by a spiral density wave. The GMCs are also associated high mass star formation traced through ultraviolet and H\alpha emission. Regions of high mass star formation show a characteristic scale of ~500 pc which is not reflected in the underlying CO distribution, suggesting that the ``beads on a string'' morphology of giant \ion{H}{2} regions seen in other galaxies may not necessarily reflect the underlying molecular distribution. This work is supported by the NSF through an Astronomy and Astrophysics Postdoctoral Fellowship (AST-0502605).

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