The VLA/ALMA Nascent Disk and Multiplicity (VANDAM) Survey of Perseus Protostars. VI. Characterizing the Formation Mechanism for Close Multiple Systems

John J. Tobin, Leslie W. Looney, Zhi Yun Li, Sarah I. Sadavoy, Michael M. Dunham, Dominique Segura-Cox, Kaitlin Kratter, Claire J. Chandler, Carl Melis, Robert J. Harris, Laura Perez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Scopus citations

Abstract

We present Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array observations of multiple protostar systems in the Perseus molecular cloud, previously detected by the Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array. We observe 17 close (<600 au separation) multiple systems at 1.3 mm in continuum and five molecular lines (i.e., 12CO, C18O, 13CO, H2CO, SO) to characterize the circum-multiple environments in which these systems are forming. We detect at least one component in the continuum for the 17 multiple systems. In three systems one companion is not detected, and for two systems the companions are unresolved at our observed resolution. We also detect circum-multiple dust emission toward eight out of nine Class 0 multiples. Circum-multiple dust emission is not detected toward any of the eight Class I multiples. Twelve systems are detected in the dense gas tracers toward their disks/inner envelopes. For these 12 systems, we use the dense gas observations to characterize their formation mechanism. The velocity gradients in the circum-multiple gas are clearly orthogonal to the outflow directions in eight out of the 12 systems, consistent with disk fragmentation. Moreover, only two systems with separations <200 au are inconsistent with disk fragmentation, in addition to the two widest systems (>500 au). Our results suggest that disk fragmentation via gravitational instability is an important formation mechanism for close multiple systems, but further statistics are needed to better determine the relative fraction formed via this method.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number43
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Volume867
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2018

Keywords

  • ISM: kinematics and dynamics
  • ISM: molecules
  • binaries: general
  • stars: formation
  • stars:protostars
  • techniques: interferometric

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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    Tobin, J. J., Looney, L. W., Li, Z. Y., Sadavoy, S. I., Dunham, M. M., Segura-Cox, D., Kratter, K., Chandler, C. J., Melis, C., Harris, R. J., & Perez, L. (2018). The VLA/ALMA Nascent Disk and Multiplicity (VANDAM) Survey of Perseus Protostars. VI. Characterizing the Formation Mechanism for Close Multiple Systems. Astrophysical Journal, 867(1), [43]. https://doi.org/10.3847/1538-4357/aae1f7