On the origin of the anomalous gas, non-declining rotation curve, and disc asymmetries in NGC 253

Xuanyi Lyu, T. Westmeier, Gerhardt R. Meurer, D. J. Hanish

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present a multiwavelength (from far-ultraviolet to emission) study of star formation feedback on the kinematics of the interstellar medium in the Sculptor galaxy, NGC 253. Its three well-known features (a disrupted stellar disc, a previously reported declining rotation curve, and anomalous gas) are studied in a common context of disc asymmetries. About 170 h of on-source ATCA observations are collected and reduced into two versions of data cubes of different angular resolution (30 arcsec/2 arcmin) and H i column density sensitivity (7.4 × 1019 cm-2/4 × 1018 cm-2). We separate the anomalous gas from the disc using a custom-made line profile fitting toolkit called FMG. Two star formation tracers (H α, FUV emission) are carefully processed and studied. We find that at R > 7.5 kpc, the star formation activity is strongly lopsided (SFRNE > SFRSW), and investigate several other properties (H α/FUV, dust temperature, stellar age, and disc stability parameters). We also find that the declining nature of the rotation curve perceived by previous studies is not intrinsic but a combined effect of kinematical asymmetries at R = 7.5-16 kpc. This is likely the consequence of star formation triggered outflow. The mass distribution and the time-scale of the anomalous gas also imply that it originates from gas outflow, which is perhaps caused by galaxy-galaxy interaction considering the crowded environment of NGC 253.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1169-1190
Number of pages22
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2023

Cite this