STAR FORMATION in W3 - AFGL 333: YOUNG STELLAR CONTENT, PROPERTIES, and ROLES of EXTERNAL FEEDBACK

Jessy Jose, Jinyoung S. Kim, Gregory J. Herczeg, Manash R. Samal, John H. Bieging, Michael R. Meyer, William H. Sherry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations

Abstract

One of the key questions in the field of star formation is the role of stellar feedback on the subsequent star formation process. The W3 giant molecular cloud complex at the western border of the W4 super bubble is thought to be influenced by the massive stars in W4. This paper presents a study of the star formation activity within AFGL 333, a ∼104 M cloud within W3, using deep JHK s photometry obtained from the NOAO Extremely Wide Field Infrared Imager combined with Spitzer IRAC and MIPS photometry. Based on the infrared excess, we identify 812 candidate young stellar objects (YSOs) in the complex, of which 99 are Class I and 713 are Class II sources. The stellar density analysis of YSOs reveals three major stellar aggregates within AFGL 333, namely AFGL 333 Main, AFGL 333 NW1 and AFGL 333 NW2. The disk fraction within AFGL 333 is estimated to be ∼50%-60%. We use the extinction map made from the colors of the background stars and CO data to understand the cloud structure and to estimate the cloud mass. From the stellar and cloud mass associated with AFGL 333, we infer that the region is currently forming stars with an efficiency of ∼4.5% and at a rate of ∼2-3 M Myr-1 pc-2. In general, the star formation activity within AFGL 333 is comparable to that of nearby low mass star-forming regions. We do not find any strong evidence to suggest that the stellar feedback from the massive stars of nearby W4 super bubble has affected the global star formation properties of the AFGL 333 region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number49
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume822
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2016

Keywords

  • stars: formation
  • stars: pre-main sequence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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