Stellar Formation

Stellar Formation

International Series in Natural Philosophy, Volume 97

1st Edition - January 1, 1978

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  • Author: V C Reddish
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483147079

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Stellar Formation brings together knowledge about the formation of stars. In seeking to determine the conditions necessary for star formation, this book examines questions such as how, where, and why stars form, and at what rate and with what properties. This text also considers whether the formation of a star is an accident or an integral part of the physical properties of matter. This book consists of 13 chapters divided into two sections and begins with an overview of theories that explain star formation as well as the state of knowledge of star formation in comparison to stellar structure and evolution. The places in which stars are forming are then analyzed by focusing on the distributions of very young stars, globules, and cloud fragments. The relationship between the distributions of stars and interstellar clouds is also considered. The chapters that follow explore the frequency distribution of stellar masses as well as the masses of aggregates of stars and interstellar clouds. The reader is also introduced to the rate and environment of star formation; the cloud-like structure of the interstellar gas; the ordering of interstellar clouds into spiral arms; and the conditions under which a cloud will contract until it is set inevitably on the route to becoming a star. The remaining chapters examine the fragmentation of clouds into protostars and the evolution of galaxies. This text will be of interest to students and practitioners of astronomy.

Table of Contents

  • Part 1: Data

    Chapter 1. Introduction

    Chapter 2. Locations of Star Formation

    The Distribution of Young Stars

    The Distribution of Interstellar Gas, Clouds and Globules

    Spatial Relationships between Young Stars and Interstellar Matter


    Chapter 3. The Frequency Distribution of Stellar Masses

    The Luminosity Function ϕ(Mv)

    The Initial Luminosity Function ψ(Mv)

    The Initial Mass-Luminosity Relation

    The Initial Mass Function


    Chapter 4. The Frequency Distribution of the Masses of Aggregates of Stars

    Chapter 5. The Frequency Distribution of Cloud Masses

    Interstellar Call Absorption Lines

    21 cm Hydrogen Line Emission

    Dust Clouds

    Chapter 6. The Rate of Star Formation

    Some Analytical Relationships

    The Rate of Star Formation in Galaxies as a Function of Gas Content, from Bright Star Counts and 21 cm Hydrogen Line Measurements

    Dependence of the Rate of Star Formation on Gas Density

    Chapter 7. The Environment of Star Formation

    Molecular Hydrogen in the Galaxy

    Interstellar and Circumstellar Obscuration

    Temperatures in Pre-Stellar Clouds

    Interstellar Magentic Fields

    Motions of the Interstellar Gas

    Element Abundances in the Interstellar Gas

    Element Abundances in the Stars

    Part 2: Theory

    Chapter 8. Cloud Structure in the Interstellar Gas

    The Maintenance of a Cloud Structure

    The Generation of a Cloud Structure

    Chapter 9. The Ordering of Clouds into Spiral Arms

    The Maintenance of Spiral Density Waves

    The Origin of Spiral Density Waves

    Ejection from Galactic Nuclei

    Mass Arms

    Spiral Arms in relation to Star Formation

    Chapter 10. Conditions for Contraction of Clouds

    Gas Pressure, Turbulence and Rotation

    Radiation Pressure

    Magnetic Pressure

    Chapter 11. The Fragmentation of Clouds into Protostars and the Frequency Distribution of Protostar Masses

    Random Fragmentation

    Hierarchal Fragmentation

    Fragmentation Induced by Molecule Formation

    Other Theories


    Chapter 12. The Rate of Formation of Stars

    Gravitational Turbulence

    Molecule Formation

    Chapter 13. The Evolution of Galaxies

    Star Formation in the Protogalaxy, Controlling Influences of Grains and Molecules

    Model Calculations

    Other Models and Analyses, Grain temperature, Mass/Luminosity Ratios, Origin of Galaxy Types, Chemical Evolution, Evolution within Galaxies



    Subject Index

Product details

  • No. of pages: 302
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Pergamon 1978
  • Published: January 1, 1978
  • Imprint: Pergamon
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483147079

About the Author

V C Reddish

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