High-mass star formation within the bright-rimmed cloud SFO 79

Urquhart, J. S.; Thompson, M. A.; Morgan, L. K. and White, G. J. (2004). High-mass star formation within the bright-rimmed cloud SFO 79. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 428(3) pp. 723–739.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:20040485


We report Radio Recombination Line (RRL) and continuum observations toward the IRAS point source 16362-4845, embedded within the Bright-Rimmed Cloud (BRC) SFO 79, a small molecular cloud lying at the edge of the HII region RCW 108. High resolution observations of the H92 α hydrogen recombination line and of the continuum emission (3.6 and 6 cm) confirm the presence of a resolved Ultra Compact (UC) HII region embedded within the molecular cloud. The integrated radio fluxes suggest the source of the ionisation to be an O9 Zero Age Main Sequence (ZAMS) star. Millimetre observations of 12CO, 13CO and C 18O ( J=1-0) molecular lines reveal the presence of a molecular condensation offset ~30´´ to the north of the IRAS position on the boundary of the UC HII region. Analysis of 2MASS data has led to the identification of a small IR cluster of Young Stellar Objects (YSOs) that are positionally coincident with the UC HII region, lying to the south east of the peak of the radio emission. Moreover, the UC HII region appears to be extended in the direction of the IR cluster, which suggests that the radio emission and the IR cluster are in some way related to each other. MSX 8.3 μm and 21.3 μm images have been used to trace the large scale structure of the BRC, revealing the presence of a Photo Dominated Region (PDR) and three embedded thermal sources within the molecular cloud. The PDR has a plane parallel morphology which correlates extremely well with the morphology of the ionised gas traced by the optical emission. The three thermal sources (labelled A, B, C) all lie at a similar projected distance from the interface between the HII region and the molecular gas of the cloud. Thermal sources A and C are positionally coincident with the IRAS point sources 16362-4845 and 16362-4841 respectively, both of which have IRAS colours consistent with the presence of UC HII regions. Given that UC HII regions are relatively short lived (~105 yrs) it is reasonable to suggest that these two UC HII regions are of a similar age. The alignment of the three thermal sources along a line parallel to the bright rim suggests that they could have been triggered by the propagation of a plane parallel shock through the cloud.

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