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Paper: A Key Science of the Starburst Open Cluster Westerlund 1: The Initial Mass Function
Volume: 482, 10th Pacific Rim Conference on Stellar Astrophysics
Page: 225
Authors: Lim, B.; Sung, H.; Hur, H.
Abstract: The initial mass function (IMF) is an important tool to understand the star formation processes and chemical evolution of distant galaxies as well as our Galaxy. While the IMF of the intermediate- to low-mass stars is relatively well studied, that of the most massive stars (>15M) is poorly known due to the paucity of such stars in the Solar neighborhood. The starburst open cluster Westerlund 1 known as the most massive open cluster in the Galaxy is an ideal laboratory to study the IMF of the high-mass part owing to the vast number of massive stars. In this study we present the IMF of the cluster derived from both optical and near infrared photometry. The slope of the IMF appears to be shallow (Γ =–0.8 ±0.1) for masses larger than 5 M. Here, we will present a discussion on the shape of the IMFs for three starburst open clusters including NGC 3603 and the Arches cluster.
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