The Size and Morphology of Sgr A* at 7mm



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PIRSA Number: 
14110067

Abstract

Long wavelength measurements provide sensitive probes of the intrinsic structure of Sgr A* and of the scattering properties of the line-of-sight interstellar medium. At this wavelength, scattering dominates the apparent size of the source but careful closure amplitude techniques can provide highly accurate structural information. We present new results from the VLBA at 7mm wavelength that for the first time reveal two-dimensional intrinsic structure while also demonstrating the stability of the intrinsic size during periods of significant activity at NIR and X-ray wavelengths. These results also demonstrate the stability of the scattering medium over time. New observations of the Galactic Center pulsar PSR J1745-2900 show that the scattering properties of Sgr A* are spatially coherent over an angular scale of at least a few arc seconds. Analysis of the angular and temporal broadening data for the pulsar place the scattering medium at a distance of kiloparsecs away from the Galactic Center, resolving a significant mystery regarding the scattering medium.