The ISM gas play a crucial role in high energy particle astrophysics as it provides the target for cosmic-ray collisions which may lead to many of the TeV gamma-ray sources discovered in the Milky Way by HESS and other TeV telescopes (see TeVCat for a complete list of TeV gamma-ray sources). An important aspect of this study concerns dense molecular gas. Via the energy dependent diffusion of cosmic-rays into molecular clouds, quite specific GeV-TeV gamma-ray spectra and morphology can be expected (e.g. Gabici etal 2007) on the arc-minute scales of molecular cloud cores and clumps. This presents a new way to probe for Galactic cosmic-rays, their origin, as well as the nature of many Galactic unidentified TeV gamma-ray sources.

The focus of our work since 2008 has been to use the Mopra telescope (a single dish 22m radio telescope in NSW, Australia) in the study of dense molecular gas towards TeV (and some GeV) gamma-ray sources. Gas tracers used include CS(1-0), SiO(1-0) at 7mm wavelengths (1 arcmin beam FWHM) and the 12mm (2 arcmin beam FWHM) inversion transitions of NH3.

Data for our project has come from proposals M318, M389, M390, M407, M519, M521, M522, M569, M570, M591, M634, M648. Our observation programme (2013-2015) was supported by direct funding from the Universities of NSW and Adelaide and current operations (2016) by an ARC LIEF project with eight partner institutes (U. Adelaide, UNSW, U. Sydney, West. Syd. Uni., Macquarie Uni., U. Tas, Nagoya Uni., Max Planck Institute for Nucl. Physics.)

Project Team and Collaborators

A/Prof. Gavin Rowell (lead, Adelaide), Prof. Michael Burton (UNSW), Prof. Yasuo Fukui (Nagoya), Prof. Bruce Dawson (Adelaide), Dr. Nigel Maxted (UNSW), Dr. Andrew Walsh (Curtin), Prof. Felix Aharonian (DIAS/MPIK), Dr. Stefan Ohm (DESY, Zeuthen)
Adelaide PhD students: Brent Nicholas (now at DSTO), Phoebe de Wilt, Jarryd Hawkes, Fabien Voisin, James Lau, Rebecca Blackwell, Cameron Snoswell (MSc student), Kirsty Feijen, Brayden Pullen (Hons students)

Project Contact

A/Prof. Gavin Rowell: Email: growell at

Related ISM Projects

Several of our team are also involved in other ISM projects (Mopra CO Survey, Mopra CMZ Survey, HOPS, MALT45-FullStrength) and make use of ATCA 7mm data from MALT45 (Pilot), CO data from Nanten/Nanten2, HI data from SGPS, and atomic carbon CI data from HEAT.

Target List

The targets we have covered so far are listed below. To first order, our Mopra observations cover the full extent of the TeV/GeV source unless indicated by specific comments or a linked publication. Observations are 'on-the-fly' mapping unless indicated. Note that Mopra CO Survey (3mm) coverage includes targets within Galactic l=300 to 010 deg, b=-0.5 to +0.5 deg. FITs cubes available for download are corrected to Mopra's efficiency (according to Urquhart et al 2010) and so are in 'main beam' brightness temperature units - T_mb

Name Gal. Coords
l,b (deg)
Publication(s) and/or
Responsible Persons
Images/Data for Download
HESSJ1018-589 284.24,-1.73 Voisin
HESSJ1023-575 (Westerlund 2) 284.19,-0.39 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Hawkes etal. 2014(7mm)
HESSJ1026-582 284.80,-0.52 Voisin
HESSJ1119-614 292.10,-0.49 Voisin
HESSJ1303-631 304.24,-0.36 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Voisin (7mm)
HESSJ1418-609 313.25,+0.16 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Voisin (7mm)
HESSJ1420-607 313.56,+0.27 deWilt (12mm)
Voisin (7mm)
HESSJ1534-571 323.6,-1.0 Maxted (3mm,7mm)
2FGLJ1554.4-5317c 327.5,0.0 Lau
HESSJ1614-518 331.52,-0.58 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
7mm part covered by MALT45
Lau etal. 2017 (3mm,7mm)
HESSJ1616-508 332.19,-0.14 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Pointon (7mm)
7mm includes coverage by MALT45
Lau etal. 2017 (3mm,7mm)
HESSJ1626-490 334.77,+0.05 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
deWilt (7mm)
12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1626.tgz
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Hawkes (7mm)
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Lau etal. 2016 (3mm,7mm)
cubes: CS(1-0) C34S(1-0) SiO(1-0) HC3N(5-4) CH3OH-I
integrated images (tgz archive): CO(1-0)
12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1640_1641.tgz
HESSJ1646-458 (Westerlund 1) 339.55,-0.35 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Ohm, Snoswell, Rowell (3mm,7mm)
HESSJ1702-420 344.30,-0.18 Lau (3mm)
RXJ1713.7-3946 347.28,-0.38 Rowell
Maxted et al. 2013
Maxted et al. 2012
cubes: CS(1-0) C34S(1-0) SiO(1-0) HC3N(5-4) CH3OH(7-6)_A++
HESSJ1714-385 (CTB37A) 348.41,+0.13 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Maxted et al. 2013(7mm)
cubes: CS(1-0) C34S(1-0) SiO(1-0) HC3N(5-4) CH3OH(7-6)_A++
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Maxted et al. 2018 (3mm, 7mm)
12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1729_1731.tgz
3mm, 7mm images:
HESSJ1745-290 (SgrA*/SgrA-East?)
Blackwell, Burton, Rowell
Covered by Mopra CMZ Survey
HESSJ1745-303 358.94,-0.64 deWilt (7,12mm)
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
deWilt etal. 2012 (12mm)
12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1745.tgz
5.90,-0.37 (b)
Nicholas et al. 2012(7mm)
Nicholas et al. 2011(12mm)
Maxted et al. 2016
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
cubes: CS(1-0), C34S(1-0), 13CS(1-0), SiO(1-0), HC3N(5-4), CH3OH-I
cubes: NH3(1,1), NH3(2,2), NH3(3,3), NH3(6,6), H2O, HC3N(3-2), HC5N(10-9), H62alpha, H65alpha, H69alpha
cubes and images from Maxted et al 2016 here
HESSJ1804-216 8.40,-0.03 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm) 12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1804.tgz
HESSJ1809-193 10.92,+0.08 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Voisin (7mm)
HESSJ1813-178 12.81,-0.03 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
SGR1806-20 10.0,-0.2 Hawkes
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Voisin (7mm)
Voisin etal 2016
cubes: CS(1-0)
images: CS(1-0) 20-40 km/s, CS(1-0) 40-60 km/s, CS(1-0) 60-80 km/s
Swift J1834.9-0846 (SGR) 23.3,-0.3 Hawkes
HESSJ1848-018 31.00,-0.16 deWilt (7,12mm)
deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
deWilt etal. 2012
12mm peak pixel images (H69alpha, HC3N(3-2), H20, NH3-1-1, NH3-2-2, NH3-3-3): 1848.tgz
HESSJ1858+020 35.58,-0.58 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
HESSJ1908+063 40.39,-0.79 Rowell (7mm)
W49A W49B 43.2,0.0 Rowell (7 mm)
HESSJ1912+101 44.36,-0.08 deWilt etal. 2017 (12mm)
Maxted (7mm)
49.12,-0.36 Rowell (7mm)
SGR/AXPs - Deep pointings (7/12mm)
Southern (dec<20deg) SGR/AXPs
from the McGill Catalog

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Last update: 06 Sept. 2017 by G. Rowell