Wednesday, November 29, 2006 - 3:15pm
Dr. Paul C. Clark (ZAH/ITA):
"Star Formation in Galactic Molecular Clouds"
Abstract. Recent sub-mm observations of the cloud structure in regions of active star formation have shown that the clump mass function closely resembles the initial mass function (IMF) of stars. A natural interpretation of these results is that the cloud's structure is the direct origin of the stellar IMF, and thus there exists a one-to-one mapping between clumps and stars. This talk will present a number of problems for this interpretation, and suggest instead that competitive accretion may play a more important role in determing the final mass function of stars. There will also be a discussion of the ability of dynamically unbound clouds to form stars, and how such clouds may fit into the global star formation picture.