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How stars are formed

Last Updated: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 - 18:07

Washington: A new paper describes the observation-based relationships of the structure and supersonic internal motions of molecular clouds where stars form.

The paper has provided an explanation for the origin of three observed correlations between various properties of molecular clouds in the Milky Way galaxy known as Larson`s Laws.

The analysis by the UC San Diego researchers is based on recent observational measurements and data from six simulations of the interstellar medium, including effects of self-gravity, turbulence, magnetic field, and multiphase thermodynamics.

The supercomputer simulations support a turbulent interpretation of Larson`s relations, and the study concludes that there are not three independent Larson laws, but that all three correlations are due to the same underlying physics, i.e. the properties of supersonic turbulence.

Emeritus Professor of Astronomy at Yale, Richard Larson`s original paper still inspires new advances in the understanding of molecular cloud structure formation and star formation.

The paper has been published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical.

First Published: Tuesday, October 22, 2013 - 18:07
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