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Cores, filaments, and bundles: hierarchical core formation in the L1495/B213 Taurus region  [PDF]
A. Hacar,M. Tafalla,J. Kauffmann,A. Kovacs
Physics , 2013, DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361/201220090
Abstract: (Abridged) Context. Core condensation is a critical step in the star-formation process, but is still poorly characterized observationally. Aims. We have studied the 10 pc-long L1495/B213 complex in Taurus to investigate how dense cores have condensed out of the lower-density cloud material. Results. From the N$_2$H$^+$ emission, we identify 19 dense cores, some starless and some protostellar. They are not distributed uniformly, but tend to cluster with relative separations on the order of 0.25 pc. From the C$^{18}$O emission, we identify multiple velocity components in the gas. We have characterized them by fitting gaussians to the spectra, and by studying the distribution of the fits in position-position-velocity space. In this space, the C$^{18}$O components appear as velocity-coherent structures, and we have identified them automatically using a dedicated algorithm (FIVe: Friends In Velocity). Using this algorithm, we have identified 35 filamentary components with typical lengths of 0.5 pc, sonic internal velocity dispersions, and mass-per-unit-length close to the stability threshold of isothermal cylinders at 10 K. Core formation seems to have occurred inside the filamentary components via fragmentation, with a small number of fertile components with larger mass-per-unit-length being responsible for most cores in the cloud. At large scales, the filamentary components appear grouped into families, which we refer to as bundles. Conclusions. Core formation in L1495/B213 has proceeded by hierarchical fragmentation. The cloud fragmented first into several pc-scale regions. Each of these regions later fragmented into velocity-coherent filaments of about 0.5 pc in length. Finally, a small number of these filaments fragmented quasi-statically and produced the individual dense cores we see today.
Star formation in the Taurus filament L1495: From Dense Cores to Stars  [PDF]
Markus Schmalzl,Jouni Kainulainen,Sascha P. Quanz,Jo?o Alves,Alyssa A. Goodman,Thomas Henning,Ralf Launhardt,Jaime E. Pineda,Carlos G. Román-Zú?iga
Physics , 2010, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/725/1/1327
Abstract: We present a study of dense structures in the L1495 filament in the Taurus Molecular Cloud and examine its star-forming properties. In particular we construct a dust extinction map of the filament using deep near-infrared observations, exposing its small-scale structure in unprecedented detail. The filament shows highly fragmented substructures and a high mass-per-length value of M_line=17 Msun/pc, reflecting star-forming potential in all parts of it. However, a part of the filament, namely B211, is remarkably devoid of young stellar objects. We argue that in this region the initial filament collapse and fragmentation is still taking place and star formation is yet to occur. In the star-forming part of the filament, we identify 39 cores with masses from 0.4...10 Msun and preferred separations in agreement with the local Jeans length. Most of these cores exceed the Bonnor-Ebert critical mass, and are therefore likely to collapse and form stars. The Dense Core Mass Function follows a power law with exponent Gamma=1.2, a form commonly observed in star-forming regions.
An Ammonia Spectral Map of the L1495-B218 Filaments in the Taurus Molecular Cloud : I. Physical Properties of Filaments and Dense cores  [PDF]
Young Min Seo,Yancy L. Shirley,Paul Goldsmith,Derek Ward-Thompson,Jason M. Kirk,Markus Schmalzl,Jeong-Eun Lee,Rachel Friesen,Glen Langston,Joe Masters,Robert W. Garwood
Physics , 2015, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/805/2/185
Abstract: We present deep NH$_3$ observations of the L1495-B218 filaments in the Taurus molecular cloud covering over a 3 degree angular range using the K-band focal plane array on the 100m Green Bank Telescope. The L1495-B218 filaments form an interconnected, nearby, large complex extending over 8 pc. We observed NH$_3$ (1,1) and (2,2) with a spectral resolution of 0.038 km/s and a spatial resolution of 31$"$. Most of the ammonia peaks coincide with intensity peaks in dust continuum maps at 350 $\mu$m and 500 $\mu$m. We deduced physical properties by fitting a model to the observed spectra. We find gas kinetic temperatures of 8 $-$ 15 K, velocity dispersions of 0.05 $-$ 0.25 km/s, and NH$_3$ column densities of 5$\times$10$^{12}$ $-$ 1$\times$10$^{14}$ cm$^{-2}$. The CSAR algorithm, which is a hybrid of seeded-watershed and binary dendrogram algorithms, identifies a total of 55 NH$_3$ structures including 39 leaves and 16 branches. The masses of the NH$_3$ sources range from 0.05 M$_\odot$ to 9.5 M$_\odot$. The masses of NH$_3$ leaves are mostly smaller than their corresponding virial mass estimated from their internal and gravitational energies, which suggests these leaves are gravitationally unbound structures. 9 out of 39 NH$_3$ leaves are gravitationally bound and 7 out of 9 gravitationally bound NH$_3$ leaves are associated with star formation. We also found that 12 out of 30 gravitationally unbound leaves are pressure-confined. Our data suggest that a dense core may form as a pressure-confined structure, evolve to a gravitationally bound core, and undergo collapse to form a protostar.
A search for pre-substellar cores and proto-brown dwarf candidates in Taurus: multiwavelength analysis in the B213-L1495 clouds  [PDF]
Aina Palau,I. de Gregorio-Monsalvo,ò. Morata,D. Stamatellos,N. Huélamo,C. Eiroa,A. Bayo,M. Morales-Calderón,H. Bouy,á. Ribas,D. Asmus,D. Barrado
Physics , 2012, DOI: 10.1111/j.1365-2966.2012.21390.x
Abstract: In an attempt to study whether the formation of brown dwarfs (BDs) takes place as a scaled-down version of low-mass stars, we conducted IRAM30m/MAMBO-II observations at 1.2 mm in a sample of 12 proto-BD candidates selected from Spitzer/IRAC data in the B213-L1495 clouds in Taurus. Subsequent observations with the CSO at 350 micron, VLA at 3.6 and 6 cm, and IRAM30m/EMIR in the 12CO(1-0), 13CO(1-0), and N2H+(1-0) transitions were carried out toward the two most promising Spitzer/IRAC source(s), J042118 and J041757. J042118 is associated with a compact (<10 arcsec or <1400 AU) and faint source at 350 micron, while J041757 is associated with a partially resolved (~16 arcsec or ~2000 AU) and stronger source emitting at centimetre wavelengths with a flat spectral index. The corresponding masses of the dust condensations are ~1 and ~5 Mjup for J042118 and J041757, respectively. In addition, about 40 arcsec to the northeast of J041757 we detect a strong and extended submillimetre source, J041757-NE, which is not associated with NIR/FIR emission down to our detection limits, but is clearly detected in 13CO and N2H+ at ~7 km/s, and for which we estimated a total mass of ~100 Mjup, close to the mass required to be gravitationally bound. In summary, our observational strategy has allowed us to find in B213-L1495 two proto-BD candidates and one pre-substellar core candidate, whose properties seem to be consistent with a scaled-down version of low-mass stars.
Four New Dense Molecular Cores in the Taurus Molecular Cloud (TMC): Ammonia and Cyanodiacetylene Observations  [PDF]
C. Codella,R. Welser,C. Henkel,P. J. Benson,P. C. Myers
Physics , 1997,
Abstract: Trying to obtain a more complete picture of star forming regions in the Taurus Molecular Cloud, four newly discovered dense cores (L1521D, L1521F, L1524, L1507A) are identified and mapped through the ammonia (J,K)=(1,1) and (2,2) rotational inversion lines. These cores have sizes of 0.06-0.09 pc, hydrogen densities of order 10000 - 100000 cm-3 and kinetic temperatures between 8 and 10 K. The masses range from 0.2 - 1.0 solar masses, placing the cores with the lowest M values at the lower edge of the mass distribution for ammonia cores in the TMC. Turbulent, thermal and gravitational energies have been estimated. A comparison between these energy terms and considerations related to thermal and turbulent line broadening indicate that these cores are close to equilibrium. Moreover we report the detection of the J=9-8 transition of HC5N towards the four ammonia peak positions. The HC5N column densities are in agreement with values derived for other molecular cores in the TMC.
Is the Taurus B213 Region a True Filament?: Observations of Multiple Cyanoacetylene Transitions  [PDF]
Di Li,Paul F. Goldsmith
Physics , 2012, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/756/1/12
Abstract: We have obtained spectra of the J=2-1 and J=10-9 transitions of cyanoacetylene (\hc3n) toward a collection of positions in the most prominent filament, B213, in the Taurus molecular cloud. The analysis of the excitation conditions of these transitions reveals an average gas H$_2$ volume density of $(1.8\pm 0.7) \times10^{4} $ \cc. Based on column density derived from 2MASS and this volume density, the line of sight dimension of the high density portion of B213 is found to be $\simeq$ 0.12 pc, which is comparable to the smaller projected dimension and much smaller than the elongated dimension of B213 ($\sim$2.4 pc). B213 is thus likely a true cylinder--like filament rather than a sheet seen edge-on. The line width and velocity gradient seen in \hc3n are also consistent with Taurus B213 being a self-gravitating filament in the early stage of either fragmentation and/or collape.
The Magnetic Field in Taurus Probed by Infrared Polarization  [PDF]
Nicholas L. Chapman,Paul F. Goldsmith,Jorge L. Pineda,D. P. Clemens,Di Li,Marko Krco
Physics , 2011, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/741/1/21
Abstract: We present maps of the plane-of-sky magnetic field within two regions of the Taurus molecular cloud: one in the dense core L1495/B213 filament, the other in a diffuse region to the west. The field is measured from the polarization of background starlight seen through the cloud. In total, we measured 287 high-quality near-infrared polarization vectors in these regions. In L1495/B213, the percent polarization increases with column density up to Av ~ 9 mag, the limits of our data. The Radiative Torques model for grain alignment can explain this behavior, but models that invoke turbulence are inconsistent with the data. We also combine our data with published optical and near-infrared polarization measurements in Taurus. Using this large sample, we estimate the strength of the plane-of-sky component of the magnetic field in nine subregions. This estimation is done with two different techniques that use the observed dispersion in polarization angles. Our values range from 5-82 microgauss and tend to be higher in denser regions. In all subregions, the critical index of the mass-to-magnetic flux ratio is sub-unity, implying that Taurus is magnetically supported on large scales (~2 pc). Within the region observed, the B213 filament makes a sharp turn to the north and the direction of the magnetic field also takes a sharp turn, switching from being perpendicular to the filament to becoming parallel. This behavior can be understood if we are observing the rim of a bubble. We argue that it has resulted from a supernova remnant associated with a recently discovered nearby gamma-ray pulsar.
Properties of Starless and Prestellar Cores in Taurus Revealed by Herschel SPIRE/PACS Imaging  [PDF]
K. A. Marsh,M. J. Griffin,P. Palmeirim,Ph. André,J. Kirk,D. Stamatellos,D. Ward-Thompson,A. Roy,S. Bontemps,J. Di Francesco,D. Elia,T. Hill,V. Konyves,F. Motte,Q. Nguyen-Luong,N. Peretto,S. Pezzuto,A. Rivera-Ingraham,N. Schneider,L. Spinoglio,G. White
Physics , 2014, DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stu219
Abstract: The density and temperature structures of dense cores in the L1495 cloud of the Taurus star-forming region are investigated using Herschel SPIRE and PACS images in the 70 $\mu$m, 160 $\mu$m, 250 $\mu$m, 350 $\mu$m and 500 $\mu$m continuum bands. A sample consisting of 20 cores, selected using spectral and spatial criteria, is analysed using a new maximum likelihood technique, COREFIT, which takes full account of the instrumental point spread functions. We obtain central dust temperatures, $T_0$, in the range 6-12 K and find that, in the majority of cases, the radial density falloff at large radial distances is consistent with the $r^{-2}$ variation expected for Bonnor-Ebert spheres. Two of our cores exhibit a significantly steeper falloff, however, and since both appear to be gravitationally unstable, such behaviour may have implications for collapse models. We find a strong negative correlation between $T_0$ and peak column density, as expected if the dust is heated predominantly by the interstellar radiation field. At the temperatures we estimate for the core centres, carbon-bearing molecules freeze out as ice mantles on dust grains, and this behaviour is supported here by the lack of correspondence between our estimated core locations and the previously-published positions of H$^{13}$CO$^+$ peaks. On this basis, our observations suggest a sublimation-zone radius typically $\sim 10^4$ AU. Comparison with previously-published N$_2$H$^+$ data at 8400 AU resolution, however, shows no evidence for N$_2$H$^+$ depletion at that resolution.
13CO Cores in Taurus Molecular Cloud  [PDF]
Lei Qian,Di Li,Paul Goldsmith
Physics , 2012, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/760/2/147
Abstract: Young stars form in molecular cores, which are dense condensations within molecular clouds. We have searched for molecular cores traced by $^{13}$CO $J=1\to 0$ emission in the Taurus molecular cloud and studied their properties. Our data set has a spatial dynamic range (the ratio of linear map size to the pixel size) of about 1000 and spectrally resolved velocity information, which together allow a systematic examination of the distribution and dynamic state of $^{13}$CO cores in a large contiguous region. We use empirical fit to the CO and CO$_2$ ice to correct for depletion of gas-phase CO. The $^{13}$CO core mass function ($^{13}$CO CMF) can be fitted better with a log-normal function than with a power law function. We also extract cores and calculate the $^{13}$CO CMF based on the integrated intensity of $^{13}$CO and the CMF from 2MASS. We demonstrate that there exists core blending, i.e.\ combined structures that are incoherent in velocity but continuous in column density. The core velocity dispersion (CVD), which is the variance of the core velocity difference $\delta v$, exhibits a power-law behavior as a function of the apparent separation $L$:\ CVD (km/s) $\propto L ({\rm pc})^{0.7}$. This is similar to Larson's law for the velocity dispersion of the gas. The peak velocities of $^{13}$CO cores do not deviate from the centroid velocities of the ambient $^{12}$CO gas by more than half of the line width. The low velocity dispersion among cores, the close similarity between CVD and Larson's law, and the small separation between core centroid velocities and the ambient gas all suggest that molecular cores condense out of the diffuse gas without additional energy from star formation or significant impact from converging flows.
C18O Depletion in Starless Cores in Taurus  [PDF]
Amanda Brady Ford,Yancy L. Shirley
Physics , 2011, DOI: 10.1088/0004-637X/728/2/144
Abstract: We present here findings for C18O depletion in eight starless cores in Taurus: TMC-2, L1498, L1512, L1489, L1517B, L1521E, L1495A-S, and L1544. We compare observations of the C18O J=2-1 transition taken with the ALMA prototype receiver on the Heinrich Hertz Submillimeter Telescope to results of radiative transfer modeling using RATRAN. We use temperature and density profiles calculated from dust continuum radiative transfer models to model the C18O emission. We present modeling of three cores, TMC-2, L1489, and L1495A-S, which have not been modeled before and compare our results for the five cores with published models. We find that all of the cores but one, L1521E, are substantially depleted. We also find that varying the temperature profiles of these model cores has a discernable effect, and varying the central density has an even larger effect. We find no trends with depletion radius or depletion fraction with the density or temperature of these cores, suggesting that the physical structure alone is insufficient to fully constrain evolutionary state. We are able to place tighter constraints on the radius at which C18O is depleted than the absolute fraction of depletion. As the timeline of chemical depletion depends sensitively on the fraction of depletion, this difficulty in constraining depletion fraction makes comparison with other timescales, such as the free-fall timescale, very difficult. Keywords: Stars:Formation -- ISM:abundances-- ISM:clouds -- Individual Objects: TMC-2, L1498, L1512, L1489, L1517B, L1521E, L1495A-S, L1544
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