Physical and Chemical Processes in Cloud-Cloud Collisions: Star Formation on the Making

Giuliana Cosentino

Departamento de Astrofísica

Año 2019

Infrared Dark Clouds (IRDCs) are cold and dense regions in space, considered as the birthplace of high-mass stars and stellar clusters. Recent studies support the idea that the physical mechanisms leading to the formation of these IRDCs may also trigger high-mass star formation within the clouds. Fossil records of such formation mechanisms may be stored in the molecular gas kinematics and chemical content of IRDCs. Hence, it is crucial to investigate IRDCs to search for signa- tures of their formation process. In this thesis, we analyse the spatial extent and kinematic structure of the typical shock tracer Silicon Monoxide (SiO) with the aim to identify signatures of one particular IRDCs formation scenario, cloud-cloud collisions, toward a sample of nine IRDCs at different evolutionary stages. The clouds are G018.82−00.28, G019.27+00.07, G028.37+00.07, G028.53−00.25, G028.67+00.13,G034.43+00.24,G034.77−00.55,G038.95−00.47, G053.11+00.05. Among the IRDCs, the extended SiO emission detected toward G034.77−00.55 probes the MHD shock wave associated with the collision between the cloud and a flow of molecular gas pushed toward the IRDC by the nearby supernova remnant W44. The shocked gas traces the internal time-dependent structure of the MHD shock, here directly observed for the first time. Toward the IRDCs G018.82−00.28 and G038.95−00.47, we speculate that the widespread SiO emission may be par- tially due to on-going star formation activity and partially associated with the inter- action between the clouds and nearby galactic bubbles. The SiO emission detected toward IRDCs G019.27+00.07, G028.37+00.07, G028.53−00.25, G034.43+00.24 and G053.11+00.05, known to be actively forming stars, is likely associated with on-going star formation activity. Finally, no significant SiO emission is found toward the IRDC G028.67+00.13. With our results, we suggest that cloud-cloud collisions triggered by stellar feedback may play.

Datos de interés

Supervisores: Prof. Serena Viti, Dr. Izaskun Jimenez-Serra
Universidad: University College London; Centro de Astrobiología
Fecha de lectura: 28/10/2019