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N. J. Evans (U. Texas at Austin), c2d Team
The Cores to Disks (c2d) Legacy program focuses on the formation of low-mass stars in nearby (within about 300 pc) clouds. Observations of five large clouds reveal intricate structure, with prominent filaments of extinction containing compact cores of dense gas and dust. The complete census of protostars and young stars with disks in these clouds reveals many previously unknown sources, including brown dwarfs of very low mass surrounded by disks. Among the 88 smaller dense cores in the survey, we have found a new class of very low luminosity objects, possibly the precursors of brown dwarfs, but still deeply embedded. Studies of disks around older stars set strong constraints on timescales for planet-building. Spectral Energy Distributions indicate a wide variety in disk structures, from large, puffed up inner rims to disks with inner holes. Spectroscopy indicates continuous changes in dust/ice properties, from quiescent molecular cloud to protostellar envelopes to disks. Disks observed at fortuitous angles allow probes of ice and gas in circumstellar disks.Support for this work, part of the Spitzer Legacy Science Program, was provided by NASA through contract 1224608 issued by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under NASA contract 1407.
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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 37 #4
© 2005. The American Astronomical Soceity.