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Title:
Magnetic field regulated infall on the disc around the massive protostar CepheusAHW2
Authors:
Vlemmings, W. H. T.; Surcis, G.; Torstensson, K. J. E.; van Langevelde, H. J.
Affiliation:
AA(Argelander-Institut für Astronomie, University of Bonn, Auf dem Hügel 71, D-53121 Bonn, Germany), AB(Argelander-Institut für Astronomie, University of Bonn, Auf dem Hügel 71, D-53121 Bonn, Germany; Max-Planck-Institut für Radioastronomie, Auf dem Hügel 69, D-53121 Bonn, Germany), AC(Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, NL-2300 RA Leiden, the Netherlands; Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe, PO Box 2, NL-7990 AA Dwingeloo, the Netherlands), AD(Leiden Observatory, Leiden University, PO Box 9513, NL-2300 RA Leiden, the Netherlands; Joint Institute for VLBI in Europe, PO Box 2, NL-7990 AA Dwingeloo, the Netherlands)
Publication:
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Volume 404, Issue 1, pp. 134-143. (MNRAS Homepage)
Publication Date:
05/2010
Origin:
WILEY
Astronomy Keywords:
magnetic fields, masers, polarization, stars: formation, ISM: individual: CepheusA
DOI:
10.1111/j.1365-2966.2010.16297.x
Bibliographic Code:
2010MNRAS.404..134V

Abstract

We present polarization observations of the 6.7-GHz methanol masers around the massive protostar CepheusAHW2 and its associated disc. The data were taken with the Multi-Element Radio Linked Interferometer Network. The maser polarization is used to determine the full three-dimensional magnetic field structure around CepheusAHW2. The observations suggest that the masers probe the large-scale magnetic field and not isolated pockets of a compressed field. We find that the magnetic field is predominantly aligned along the protostellar outflow and perpendicular to the molecular and dust disc. From the three-dimensional magnetic field orientation and measurements of the magnetic field strength along the line of sight, we are able to determine that the high-density material, in which the masers occur, is threaded by a large-scale magnetic field of ~23mG. This indicates that the protostellar environment at ~1000au from CepheusAHW2 is slightly supercritical (lambda ~ 1.7) and the relation between density and magnetic field is consistent with the collapse along the magnetic field lines. Thus, the observations indicate that the magnetic field likely regulates accretion on to the disc. The magnetic field dominates the turbulent energies by approximately a factor of 3 and is sufficiently strong to be the crucial component stabilizing the massive accretion disc and sustaining the high accretion rates needed during massive star formation.
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