• Orbiting Astronomical Satellite for Investigating Stellar Systems (OASIS): “Following water from galaxies, through protostellar systems, to oceans”

      Walker, C.K.; Chin, G.; Aalto, S.; Anderson, C.M.; Arenberg, J.W.; Battersby, C.; Bergin, E.; Bergner, J.; Biver, N.; Bjoraker, G.L.; et al. (SPIE, 2021)
      Orbiting Astronomical Satellite for Investigating Stellar Systems (OASIS) is a space-based, MIDEX-class mission concept that employs a 17-meter diameter inflatable aperture with cryogenic heterodyne receivers, enabling high sensitivity and high spectral resolution (resolving power >106) observations at terahertz frequencies. OASIS science is targeting submillimeter and far-infrared transitions of H2O and its isotopologues, as well as deuterated molecular hydrogen (HD) and other molecular species from 660 to 80 µm, which are inaccessible to ground-based telescopes due to the opacity of Earth’s atmosphere. OASIS will have >20x the collecting area and ~5x the angular resolution of Herschel, and it complements the shorter wavelength capabilities of the James Webb Space Telescope. With its large collecting area and suite of terahertz heterodyne receivers, OASIS will have the sensitivity to follow the water trail from galaxies to oceans, as well as directly measure gas mass in a wide variety of astrophysical objects from observations of the ground-state HD line. OASIS will operate in a Sun-Earth L1 halo orbit that enables observations of large numbers of galaxies, protoplanetary systems, and solar system objects during the course of its 1-year baseline mission. OASIS embraces an overarching science theme of “following water from galaxies, through protostellar systems, to oceans.” This theme resonates with the NASA Astrophysics Roadmap and the 2010 Astrophysics Decadal Survey, and it is also highly complementary to the proposed Origins Space Telescope’s objectives. © 2021 SPIE.
    • The case for thermalization as a contributor to the [C ii] deficit

      Sutter, J.; Dale, D.A.; Sandstrom, K.; Smith, J.D.T.; Bolatto, A.; Boquien, M.; Calzetti, D.; Croxall, K.V.; De Looze, I.; Galametz, M.; et al. (Oxford University Press, 2021)
      The [C ii] deficit, which describes the observed decrease in the ratio of [C ii] 158 μm emission to continuum infrared emission in galaxies with high star formation surface densities, places a significant challenge to the interpretation of [C ii] detections from across the observable universe. In an attempt to further decode the cause of the [C ii] deficit, the [C ii] and dust continuum emission from 18 Local Volume galaxies has been split based on conditions within the interstellar medium where it originated. This is completed using the Key Insights in Nearby Galaxies: a Far-Infrared Survey with Herschel (KINGFISH) and Beyond the Peak (BtP) surveys and the wide-range of wavelength information, from UV to far-infrared emission lines, available for a selection of star-forming regions within these samples. By comparing these subdivided [C ii] emissions to isolated infrared emission and other properties, we find that the thermalization (collisional de-excitation) of the [C ii] line in H ii regions plays a significant role in the deficit observed in our sample. © 2021 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Astronomical Society.