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Comments on Gravoturbulent Star Formation

  • Ralf S. Klessen

Abstract

Understanding the star formation process is central to much of modern astrophysics. Stellar birth is intimately linked to the dynamical behavior of the parental gas cloud. Gravoturbulent fragmentation determines where and when protostellar cores form, and how they contract and grow in mass via accretion from the surrounding cloud material to build up stars. Supersonic turbulence can provide support against gravitational collapse on global scales, whereas at the same time it produces localized density enhancements that allow for collapse on small scales. The efficiency and timescale of stellar birth in Galactic molecular clouds strongly depend on the properties of the interstellar turbulent velocity field, with slow, inefficient, isolated star formation being a hallmark of turbulent support, and fast, efficient, clustered star formation occurring in its absence.

Keywords

star formation turbulence 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ralf S. Klessen
    • 1
  1. 1.Astrophysikalisches Institut PotsdamPotsdamGermany

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