ASIAA Summer Students Program
ASIAA Summer Student Program 2024
July 1 - August 30

2024 Project Description

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Physical and Chemical Properties of Star-forming cores

Observation, Radio Astronomy, SMA, Star Formation


Seamus Clarke, Ya-Wen Tang
Find out more about supervisors on ASIAA website

Task Description and Goals

The complexity of the interstellar medium (ISM) arises from multiple physical forces (e.g. gravity, turbulence, and magnetic fields) simultaneously interacting on multiple spatial scales. It is thought that the relative importance between gravity, turbulence and magnetic fields changes as one moves from the larger scale (i.e. molecular clouds, ~10 pc) to smaller scales (i.e. star-forming cores, <0.1 pc), and that this relative importance at a given scale has a profound impact on the fragmentation at smaller scales, thus altering star formation. This is especially true for massive clumps where high-mass stars form. In this project, the student will analyze the observational data toward a few high-mass stars taken from the Submillimeter Array (SMA). The student will extract the kinematic information using the molecular lines and determine the B field properties using the dust polarization data from the SMA key science project STREAMS. The STREAMS (STar-forming Region Energetics Across Multiple Scales) aims to measure the multi-scale relative importance of gravity, turbulence and magnetic fields across a sample of 23 massive clumps. These observational results from the SMA will be used to compare the impact of gravity, turbulence and magnetic fields at 1 pc scale on the star-forming-core scales. The student will learn the basics of star formation, the interstellar medium and how to extract the physical parameters from the observational data.

Required Background

English proficiency, a Physics/Astrophysics background, experience using Python

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