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Fragmentation and filaments at the onset of star and cluster formation: SABOCA 350 μm view of ATLASGAL selected massive clumps

Lin, Y., Csengeri, T., Wyrowski, F., Urquhart, J.S., Schuller, F., Weiss, A., Menten, K.M. (2019) Fragmentation and filaments at the onset of star and cluster formation: SABOCA 350 μm view of ATLASGAL selected massive clumps. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 631 . Article Number A72. ISSN 2329-1273. E-ISSN 2329-1265. (doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201935410) (KAR id:76089)


Context. The structure formation of the dense interstellar material and the fragmentation of clumps into cores is a fundamental step to understand how stars and stellar clusters form. Aims. We aim to establish a statistical view of clump fragmentation at sub-parsec scales based on a large sample of massive clumps selected from the ATLASGAL survey. Methods. We used the APEX/SABOCA camera at 350 µm to image clumps at a resolution of 8.005, corresponding to physical scales of <0.2 pc at a distance <5 kpc. The majority of the sample consists of massive clumps that are weak or in absorption at 24 µm. We resolve spherical and filamentary structures and identify the population of compact sources. Complemented with archival Herschel data, we derive the physical properties, such as dust temperature, mass and bolometric luminosity of clumps and cores. We use association with mid-infrared 22-24 µm and 70 µm point sources to pin down the star formation activity of the cores. We then statistically assess their physical properties, and the fragmentation characteristics of massive clumps. Results. We detect emission at 350 µm towards all targets and find that it typically exhibits a filamentary(-like) morphology and hosts a population of compact sources. Using Gaussclumps we identify 1120 compact sources and derive the physical parameters and star formation activity for 971 of these, 874 of which are associated with 444 clumps. We find a moderate correlation between the clump fragmentation levels with the clump gas density and the predicted number of fragments with pure Jeans fragmentation scenario. We find a strong correlation between the mass of the most massive fragment and the total clump mass, suggesting that the self-gravity may play an important role in the clumps’ small scale structure formation. Finally, due to the improved angular resolution compared to ATLASGAL, we are able to identify 27 massive quiescent cores with Mcore > 100 M within 5 kpc; these are massive enough to be self-gravitating but do not yet show any sign of star-formation. This sample comprises, therefore, promising candidates of massive pre-stellar cores, or deeply embedded high-mass protostars. Conclusions. The submillimeter observations of the massive clumps that are weak or completely dark at 24 µm reveal rich filamentary structures and an embedded population of compact cores. The maximum core mass is likely determined by the self-gravity of the clump. The rarity of massive pre-stellar core candidates implies short collapse time-scales for dense structures.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1051/0004-6361/201935410
Uncontrolled keywords: massive star formation – fragmentation – clump/core population
Divisions: Faculties > Sciences > School of Physical Sciences > Centre for Astrophysics and Planetary Sciences
Depositing User: James Urquhart
Date Deposited: 02 Sep 2019 14:48 UTC
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2020 09:55 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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