Scientists question the laws of the formation of stars

02.05.2018

An international team of researchers has challenged the ideas of star formation. According to astronomers, the widespread perception that the distribution of the mass of the star population is identical to the distribution of the mass of the nuclei from which the stars were formed is not confirmed by observations.

In space, gas clouds are compressed by gravity and form structures from which stars are born, that is, the nuclei of future stars. These nuclei gather in clusters, accumulate matter and fragment, eventually giving rise to the accumulation of young stars of different masses. The distribution of the masses in these clusters was described by Edwin Salpeter in the form of an astrophysical law in 1955.

Astronomers have long noticed that the ratio of the total mass of massive objects to less massive objects is the same as in the case of clusters of nuclei of future stars, and in clusters of "newborn" stars. However, in a new study, a group of astronomers led By F. Motte shows that this ratio only works in the case of molecular clouds closest to the Solar system. Scientists note that these clouds have a relatively low density and therefore do not reflect, to the extent required, the properties of the star-forming regions of our entire Galaxy, which tend to have a higher density. After observations of distant molecular clouds, called W43-MM1 with the help of the radio Observatory ALMA, the team motto detected a higher proportion of massive stars in relation to the amount calculated according to the universal ratio, open Salmeterol.

This finding suggests that the relationship between the mass distribution in the cluster of young stars and the nuclei from which the stars are formed is more complex than anticipated and may result in a revision of a number of estimates based on this distribution, such as estimates of the composition of the interstellar matter, the number of black holes and supernovae, etc.

The work is published i