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Pulsations, Shocks, and Mass LossThis grant provided long-term support for my investigation of the outflows powered by young stars. Several major research results emerged during the course of this research, including: (1) The discovery of giant Herbig-Haro outflows from young stars that can extend for many parsecs from their sources. The first parsec-scale outflow to be recognized led to the realization that Herbig-Haro outflows, even those produced by low mass young stellar objects, can extend orders of magnitude farther from their sources than previously thought. Our preconceptions were to a large extent driven by the narrow fields-of-view then provided by CCD detectors. With the recent advent of large format CCDs and CCD mosaics, we have come to realize that most outflows attain parsec-scale dimensions. Even at the distance of the Orion star forming clouds, such flows can subtend a degree on the sky. Our work has led to the recognition of over two dozen giant. (2) The discovery that outflows are highly clustered. Even regions of relatively isolated star formation such as those in Taurus frequently produce multiple outflows. (3) The discovery of a new family of externally irradiated jets. During the last year of support from this grant, we made the startling discovery that there is a class of jets from young stars that are illuminated by the ionizing radiation field of nearby massive stars. The first four examples were discovered in the vicinity of the a Orionis sub-group of the Orion OB Association which is believed to be at least 2 million years old. Since the jets are photo-ionized, their densities can be reliably estimated. Most HH jets are shock excited, and are therefore notoriously difficult to characterize since their visibility and observed properties depend on the complex and highly non-linear processes associated with shocks. Furthermore, many irradiated jets are one sided rather than bipolar. Thus, irradiated jets may for the first time be used to accurately diagnose jet densities and mass loss rates, and to probe the physics of jet collimation, and may indicate that the jet production phase of certain young stars may last more than a million years. These three discoveries provide us with fundamental new insights into the star formation process, into the physical conditions inside and near star forming clouds, and into new ways to probe the physics and chemistry of such clouds.
Document ID
Document Type
Bally, John (Colorado Univ. Boulder, CO United States)
Date Acquired
August 19, 2013
Publication Date
November 2, 1998
Subject Category
Funding Number(s)
Distribution Limits
Work of the US Gov. Public Use Permitted.
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