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First cosmological constraints on the proton-to-electron massc ratio from observations of rotational transitions of methanol

Citation

Ellingsen, SP and Voronkov, MA and Breen, SL and Lovell, JEJ, First cosmological constraints on the proton-to-electron massc ratio from observations of rotational transitions of methanol, Astrophysical Journal Letters, 747, (1) Article L7. ISSN 2041-8205 (2012) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 The American Astronomical Society.

DOI: doi:10.1088/2041-8205/747/1/L7

Abstract

We have used the Australia Telescope Compact Array to measure the absorption from the 20 → 3–1E 12.2 GHz transition of methanol toward the z = 0.89 lensing galaxy in the PKS B1830–211 gravitational lens system. Comparison of the velocity of the main absorption feature with the published absorption spectrum from the 10 → 2–1E transition of methanol shows that they differ by –0.6 ± 1.6 km s–1. We can use these observations to constrain the changes in the proton-to-electron mass ratio μ from z = 0.89 to the present to 0.8 ± 2.1 × 10–7. This result is consistent, and of similar precision to recent observations at z = 0.68 achieved through comparison of a variety of rotational and inversion transitions, and approximately a factor of two better than previous constraints obtained in this source. Future more sensitive observations that incorporate additional rotational methanol transitions offer the prospect of improving current results by a factor of 5-10.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:galaxies: ISM; ISM: molecules; quasars: absorption lines; quasars: individual (PKS 1830-211)
Research Division:Physical Sciences
Research Group:Astronomical and Space Sciences
Research Field:High Energy Astrophysics; Cosmic Rays
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding Knowledge in the Physical Sciences
Author:Ellingsen, SP (Professor Simon Ellingsen)
Author:Lovell, JEJ (Dr Jim Lovell)
ID Code:78613
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:20
Deposited By:Mathematics and Physics
Deposited On:2012-07-09
Last Modified:2013-07-01
Downloads:0

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