University of Connecticut

Events Calendar

Astronomy Seminar

Wednesday, December 4, 2019
2:00pm – 3:00pm

Storrs Campus

Dr. Brian Svoboda,National Radio Astronomy Observatory

The earliest phases of high-mass star formation in the Milky Way

High-mass stars are key to regulating the interstellar medium, star formation activity, and overall evolution of galaxies, but their formation remains an open problem in astrophysics. In order to understand the physical conditions during the earliest phases of high-mass star formation, I will present observational studies we have carried out on dense molecular clouds that show no signatures of star formation activity. We identify several thousand dense, starless clump candidates (SCCs) from the 1.1 mm Bolocam Galactic Plane Survey and systematically analyze their physical properties. We further investigate the 12 most high-mass SCCs within 5 kpc using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) to study their sub-structure at high spatial resolution. We find previously undetected low-luminosity protostars in 11 out of 12 SCCs, fragmentation equal to the thermal Jeans length of the clump, and no starless cores exceeding 30 solar masses. While uncertainties remain concerning the star formation efficiency in this sample, these observational facts are consistent with models where high-mass stars form from initially low- to intermediate-mass protostars that accrete most of their mass from the surrounding clump. I will also present on-going research studying gas inflow signatures with GBT/Argus and ALMA, and the dense core mass function with the JVLA.


Prof. J. Trump

Physics Department (primary), UConn Master Calendar

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