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The Outer Scutum-Centaurus (OSC) spiral arm is the most distant molecular spiral arm in the Milky Way, but until recently little was known about this structure. Discovered by Dame and Thaddeus (2011), the OSC lies $\sim$15 kpc from the Galactic Center. Due to the Galactic warp, it rises to nearly 4$^{\circ}$ above the Galactic Plane in the first Galactic quadrant, leaving it unsampled by most Galactic plane surveys. Here we observe HII region candidates spatially coincident with the OSC using the Very Large Array to image radio continuum emission from 65 targets and the Green Bank Telescope to search for ammonia and water maser emission from 75 targets. This sample, drawn from the WISE Catalog of Galactic HII Regions, represents every HII region candidate near the longitude-latitude (l,v) locus of the OSC. Coupled with their characteristic mid-infrared morphologies, detection of radio continuum emission strongly suggests that a target is a bona fide HII region. Detections of associated ammonia or water maser emission allow us to derive a kinematic distance and determine if the velocity of the region is consistent with that of the OSC. Nearly 60% of the observed sources were detected in radio continuum, and over 20% have ammonia or water maser detections. The velocities of these sources mainly place them beyond the Solar orbit. These very distant high-mass stars have stellar spectral types as early as O4. We associate high-mass star formation at 2 new locations with the OSC, increasing the total number of detected HII regions in the OSC to 12.

Source Citation

Armentrout, W. P., Anderson, L. D., Balser, Dana S., Bania, T. M., Dame, T. M., & Wenger, Trey V. (2017). High-Mass Star Formation In The Outer Scutum–Centaurus Arm. The Astrophysical Journal, 841(2), 121.



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