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Triggered star formation in the isolated cluster CB 34?

Abstract

Bok globules, optically opaque small dark clouds, are classical examples of isolated star formation. However, the collapse mechanism for these cold, dense clouds of gas and dust is not well understood. Observations of Bok globules include some which appear to be starless while others harbor single stars, binaries and even small groups of forming stars. One example of a Bok globule forming a group of stars is CB 34, observed with both the IRAC and MIPS instruments as part of the Spitzer Young Cluster Survey. Based on initial analysis of 1-8 μm photometry from IRAC and the Two Micron All Sky Survey (2MASS), we identified 9 Class 0/I and 14 Class II young stellar objects within the small, 4.5′ × 4.5′ region encompassing CB 34. This unusually high number of protostars compared with Class II sources is intriguing because it implies a high rate of star formation. Therefore we have begun a larger study of this region in order to determine why and how CB 34 started forming stars at such a high rate. Is CB 34 embedded within a larger HII region which may have triggered its collapse or does it appear to have collapsed in isolation from outside influences?

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References

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Carraro, G., Chaboyer, B. & Perencevich, J. 2006, MNRAS 365, 867
Kawamura, A. et al. 1998, ApJS 117, 387
Carpenter, J. M., Snell, R. L. & Schloerb, F. P. 1995, ApJ 445, 246
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