Back to Volume
Paper: Initial Conditions for Massive Star Formation
Volume: 387, Massive Star Formation: Observations Confront Theory
Page: 3
Authors: Wyrowski, F.
Abstract: In this contribution, our knowledge of the initial conditions under which massive star formation takes place is reviewed. Massive stars are born in massive clumps of giant molecular clouds (GMCs), hence first the properties of GMCs are summarized. As a potentially early stage of molecular clouds, infrared dark clouds have been discovered a decade ago as dark patches in mid- infrared (MIR) images of the Galactic plane and many studies of the physical conditions within them have been conducted recently. Without the guidance of MIR absorption, large scale, unbiased cold dust surveys can be used as well to identify massive cold clumps. In the absence of indicators of ongoing massive star formation, like compact HII regions and bright IR sources, these clumps are the most promising objects for the study of the initial conditions of massive star formation. Current observational approaches to find IR-quiet clumps and their physical and chemical properties are summarized.
Back to Volume