Evidence for ongoing star formation in the Carina nebula

Megeath S.T.; Cox, P; Bronfman, L.; Roelfsema P.R.


We present the first evidence that star formation is continuing in the molecular complex associated with the Carina nebula. CO observations in several isotopomers and transitions reveal a clumpy and dynamically complex structure in the molecular gas south of the OB association Trumpler 16. Superresolution IRAS images of the region show a 1.1 10 4 L ? point source (IRAS 10430-5931) in a molecular clump at the edge of the cloud complex. The IRAS colors are characteristic of deeply embedded young stellar objects. Through a comparison with a published [SII] photograph, we find that the clump is a bright-rimmed globule. The mass of the globule is 67 M ?, yielding a luminosity-to-mass ratio of ? 160 L ?/M ?. J, H and K?-Band imaging of the IRAS source shows a group of highly reddened stars and bright nebulosity. We argue on a statistical basis that some of the reddened stars must be embedded in the globule and are not background objects. Additionally, several of the reddened stars exhibit anomalous near-infrared colors which are typical of embedded pre-main sequence stars. The near-infrared images show that all apparent star formation is taking place near the rim, 0.5 pc from the peak in 13CO(2 -1) emission. This morphology is suggestive of star formation triggered by radiation driven shocks.

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Volumen: 305
Número: 1
Editorial: EDP Sciences
Fecha de publicación: 1996
Página de inicio: 296
Página final: 307
URL: http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?eid=2-s2.0-0000584020&partnerID=q2rCbXpz