PHANGS CO Kinematics: Disk Orientations and Rotation Curves at 150 pc Resolution

Philipp Lang, Sharon E. Meidt, Erik Rosolowsky, Joseph Nofech, Eva Schinnerer, Adam K. Leroy, Eric Emsellem, Ismael Pessa, Simon C.O. Glover, Brent Groves, Annie Hughes, J. M.Diederik Kruijssen, Miguel Querejeta, Andreas Schruba, Frank Bigiel, Guillermo A. Blanc, Mélanie Chevance, Dario Colombo, Christopher Faesi, Jonathan D. HenshawCinthya N. Herrera, Daizhong Liu, Jérôme Pety, Johannes Puschnig, Toshiki Saito, Jiayi Sun, Antonio Usero

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35 Citations (Web of Science)


We present kinematic orientations and high-resolution (150 pc) rotation curves for 67 main-sequence star-forming galaxies surveyed in CO (2-1) emission by PHANGS-ALMA. Our measurements are based on the application of a new fitting method tailored to CO velocity fields. Our approach identifies an optimal global orientation as a way to reduce the impact of nonaxisymmetric (bar and spiral) features and the uneven spatial sampling characteristic of CO emission in the inner regions of nearby galaxies. The method performs especially well when applied to the large number of independent lines of sight contained in the PHANGS CO velocity fields mapped at 1″ resolution. The high-resolution rotation curves fitted to these data are sensitive probes of mass distribution in the inner regions of these galaxies. We use the inner slope as well as the amplitude of our fitted rotation curves to demonstrate that CO is a reliable global dynamical mass tracer. From the consistency between photometric orientations from the literature and kinematic orientations determined with our method, we infer that the shapes of stellar disks in the mass range of log = 9.0-10.9 probed by our sample are very close to circular and have uniform thickness.

Original languageEnglish
Article number122
JournalThe Astrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 10 Jul 2020


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