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Astron. Astrophys. 362, 697-710 (2000)

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5. Conclusion

This paper describes a computer code to solve the coupled problem of radiative transfer and molecular excitation for spherically and cylindrically symmetric source geometries. It is based on the Monte Carlo method, but incorporates elements from accelerated lambda iteration which greatly improve convergence in the presence of significant optical depth. In particular, the code separates excitation due to the local environment from the response to the radiation field after propagation through the source. This approach combines the flexibility of a Monte Carlo method with the reliability of accelerated lambda iteration. We expect our code to be a valuable tool in the interpretation of the wealth of data that current and future instruments operating from the millimetre to the infrared will yield. A number of examples (Sect. 4) already illustrates the applications to problems in star formation studies.

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 2000

Online publication: October 24, 2000