AAS 203rd Meeting, January 2004
Session 124 JWST Science
Special Session, Thursday, January 8, 2004, 10:00-11:30am, Centennial III

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[124.04] Birth of Stars and Protoplanetary Systems

M. J. McCaughrean (Astrophysikalisches Institut Postdam)

The JWST will deliver extraordinary new insights into the complex interplay between the various processes which yield stars and their planetary systems. Its unique combination of extreme sensitivity, high spatial resolution, large dynamic range, and large field-of-view at near- and mid-infrared wavelengths ensures that the diverse range of sources, phenomena, and their interactions within a star-forming regions can be captured and disentangled.

In this talk, we will present a broad overview of and specific examples from the star and planet formation case for the JWST. In particular, we will discuss the fragmentation of molecular cloud cores into highly dynamic clusters of protostars; the early evolution of those protostars; the formation of massive stars; how the intense ultraviolet flux and strong winds of massive stars can stop and/or trigger star formation and how they can destroy protoplanetary disks; and the processing of dust, gases, and ices, in star and planet-forming environments.

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Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, 35#5
© 2003. The American Astronomical Soceity.