On the Alignment of T Tauri Stars with the Local Magnetic Field in the Taurus Molecular Cloud Complex
Magnetic field is believed to play an important role in the collapse of a molecular cloud. In particular, due to the properties of magnetic forces, collapse should be easier along magnetic field lines. This is supported by the large-scale sheet-like structures observed in the Taurus giant molecular cloud for instance. Here we investigate whether such a preferred orientation for collapse is present at a much smaller scale, that of individual objects, i.e., about 100AU. We use recent high-angular resolution images of T Tauri stars located in the Taurus star-forming region to find the orientation of the symmetry axis of each star+jet+disk system and compare it with that of the local magnetic field. We find that (i) T Tauri stars that are associated to a jet or an outflow are generally oriented parallel to the magnetic field, as previously demonstrated. More surprising, given our current knowledge of these objects, we also find that (ii) T Tauri stars that are not at present believed to be associated to a jet or an outflow are oriented very differently, i.e., mostly perpendicular to the magnetic field. We present some implications of this puzzling new result.
KeywordsT Tauri stars magnetic field orientation disks jets
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