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ISDCCDCI
Data Centre for Astrophysics
Astronomy Department of the University of Geneva
ISDC Seminar

Friday, 14 December 2007 at 11:00

Francesco Fontani
INAF-Istituto di Radioastronomia, Bologna (Italy)

The initial conditions in the high-mass star formation process

Abstract. Pre-stellar cores are dense and cold molecular condensations where the star formation process will probably take place. Protostars are born from gravitational collapse of these cores, so that understanding their internal structure allows one to constrain the initial conditions of the star formation process. So far, several examples of low-mass pre-stellar cores have been identified, but a sample of high-mass pre-stellar cores is lacking. Bearing in mind that high-mass stars form in clusters, we have searched for cold and dense spots close to some well-known high-mass protostellar objects, adopting the investigative techniques successful in the identification of low-mass pre-stellar cores (i.e. high values of the column density ratio N(N2D+)/N(N2H+) and of the CO depletion factor). I will present both single-dish and interferometric millimeter and sub-millimeter observations that have allowed us to identify pre-stellar core candidates in the studied sources.

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