The SOFIA FEEDBACK Legacy Survey: Dynamics and mass ejection in the bipolar HII region RCW 36

L. Bonne, N. Schneider, P. García, A. Bij, P. Broos, L. Fissel, R. Guesten, J. Jackson, R. Simon, L. Townsley, A. Zavagno, R. Aladro, C. Buchbender, C. Guevara, R. Higgins, A. M. Jacob, S. Kabanovic, R. Karim, A. Soam, J. Stutzki, M. Tiwari, F. Wyrowski, A. G. G. M. Tielens

Submitted on 13 July 2022


We present [CII] 158 μm and [OI] 63 μm observations of the bipolar HII region RCW 36 in the Vela C molecular cloud, obtained within the SOFIA legacy project FEEDBACK, which is complemented with APEX 12/13CO(3-2) and Chandra X-ray (0.5-7 keV) data. This shows that the molecular ring, forming the waist of the bipolar nebula, expands with a velocity of 1 - 1.9 km s1. We also observe an increased linewidth in the ring indicating that turbulence is driven by energy injection from the stellar feedback. The bipolar cavity hosts blue-shifted expanding [CII] shells at 5.2±0.5±0.5 km s1 (statistical and systematic uncertainty) which indicates that expansion out of the dense gas happens non-uniformly and that the observed bipolar phase might be relatively short (0.2 Myr). The X-ray observations show diffuse emission that traces a hot plasma, created by stellar winds, in and around RCW 36. At least 50 \% of the stellar wind energy is missing in RCW 36. This is likely due to leakage which is clearing even larger cavities around the bipolar RCW 36 region. Lastly, the cavities host high-velocity wings in [CII] which indicates relatively high mass ejection rates (5×104 M yr1). This could be driven by stellar winds and/or radiation pressure, but remains difficult to constrain. This local mass ejection, which can remove all mass within 1 pc of RCW 36 in 1-2 Myr, and the large-scale clearing of ambient gas in the Vela C cloud indicates that stellar feedback plays a significant role in suppressing the star formation efficiency (SFE).


Comment: 38 pages, 27 figures, 8 tables, accepted in ApJ

Subject: Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies