Transitions in OMC-2 FIR 4 in the far-IR
Date of Archiving2014
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Key wordsAstrochemistry; stars; formation; protostars
Broadband spectral surveys of protostars offer a rich view of the physical, chemical and dynamical structure and evolution of star-forming regions. The Herschel Space Observatory opened up the terahertz regime to such surveys, giving access to the fundamental transitions of many hydrides and to the high-energy transitions of many other species. A comparative analysis of the chemical inventories and physical processes and properties of protostars of various masses and evolutionary states is the goal of the Herschel CHEmical Surveys of Star forming regions (CHESS) key program. This paper focusses on the intermediate-mass protostar, OMC-2 FIR 4. We obtained a spectrum of OMC-2 FIR 4 in the 480 to 1902GHz range with the HIFI spectrometer onboard Herschel and carried out the reduction, line identification, and a broad analysis of the line profile components, excitation, and cooling. We detect 719 spectral lines from 40 species and isotopologs. The line flux is dominated by CO, H2O, and CH3OH. The line profiles are complex and vary with species and upper level energy, but clearly contain signatures from quiescent gas, a broad component likely due to an outflow, and a foreground cloud. We find abundant evidence for warm, dense gas, as well as for an outflow in the field of view. Line flux represents 2% of the 7L☉ luminosity detected with HIFI in the 480 to 1250GHz range. Of the total line flux, 60% is from CO, 13% from H2O and 9% from CH3OH. A comparison with similar HIFI spectra of other sources is set to provide much new insight into star formation regions, a case in point being a difference of two orders of magnitude in the relative contribution of sulphur oxides to the line cooling of Orion KL and OMC-2 FIR 4.