ALMA CO Clouds and Young Star Complexes in the Interacting Galaxies IC 2163 and NGC 2207

View publication


Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) observations of CO(1-0) emission in the interacting galaxies IC 2163 and NGC 2207 are used to determine the properties of molecular clouds and their association with star-forming regions observed with the Hubble Space Telescope. Half of the CO mass is in 249 clouds, each more massive than . The mass distribution functions for the CO clouds and star complexes in a galactic-scale shock front in IC 2163 both have a slope on a log-log plot of -0.7, similar to what is observed in Milky Way clouds. The molecular cloud mass function is steeper in NGC 2207. The CO distribution in NGC 2207 also includes a nuclear ring, a mini-bar, and a mini-starburst region that dominates the , radio, and Hα emission in both galaxies. The ratio of the sum of the masses of star complexes younger than 30 Myr to the associated molecular cloud masses is ∼4%. The maximum age of star complexes in the galactic-scale shock front in IC 2163 is about 200 Myr, the same as the interaction time of the two galaxies, suggesting the destruction of older complexes in the eyelids.