Emission-line velocity, metallicity, and extinction maps of the Large Magellanic Cloud

Philip Lah, Matthew Colless, Francesco D’Eugenio, Brent Groves, Joseph D. Gelfand

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We measure the properties of optical emission lines in multiple locations across the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC) using the Australian National University 2.3-m telescope and the Wide-Field Spectrograph (WiFeS). From these measurements, we interpolate maps of the gas-phase metallicity, extinction, Hα radial velocity, and Hα velocity dispersion across the LMC. The LMC metallicity maps show a complex structure that cannot be explained by a simple radial gradient. The bright H II region 30 Doradus stands out as a region of high extinction. The Hα and H I gas radial velocities are mostly consistent except for a region to the south and east of the LMC centre. The Hα velocity dispersion is almost always higher than the H I velocity dispersion, except in the region that shows the divergence in radial velocity, where the H I velocity dispersion is greater than the Hα velocity dispersion. This suggests that the H I gas is diverging from the stellar radial velocity, perhaps as a result of inflow or outflow of H I gas. The study of dwarf galaxies like the LMC is important as they are the building blocks of larger galaxies like our own Milky Way. The maps provided in this work show details not accessible in the study of more distant dwarf galaxies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2611-2626
Number of pages16
JournalMonthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society
Issue number3
StatePublished - Apr 1 2024


  • H II regions
  • ISM: abundances
  • ISM: kinematics and dynamics
  • galaxies: Magellanic Clouds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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