National Astronomical Observatory of China

Chaoyang, China

National Astronomical Observatory of China

Chaoyang, China

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Zheng X.,Peking University | Zheng X.,University of California at Santa Cruz | Zheng X.,Tsinghua University | Lin D.N.C.,Peking University | And 5 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2017

The distribution of heavy elements is anomalously low in the asteroid main belt region compared with elsewhere in the solar system. Observational surveys also indicate a deficit in the number of small (≲50 km size) asteroids, which is two orders of magnitude lower than what is expected from the single power-law distribution that results from a collisional coagulation and fragmentation equilibrium. Here, we consider the possibility that a major fraction of the original asteroid population may have been cleared out by Jupiter's secular resonance, as it swept through the main asteroid belt during the depletion of the solar nebula. This effect leads to the excitation of the asteroids' orbital eccentricities. Concurrently, hydrodynamic drag and planet-disk tidal interaction effectively damp the eccentricities of sub-100 km-size and of super-lunar-size planetesimals, respectively. These combined effects lead to the asteroids' orbital decay and clearing from the present-day main belt region (∼2.1-3.3 au). Eccentricity damping for the intermediate-size (50 to several hundreds of kilometers) planetesimals is less efficient than for small or large planetesimals. These objects therefore preferentially remain as main belt asteroids near their birthplaces, with modest asymptotic eccentricities. The smaller asteroids are the fragments of subsequent disruptive collisions at later times as suggested by the present-day asteroid families. This scenario provides a natural explanation for both the observed low surface density and the size distribution of asteroids in the main belt, without the need to invoke special planetesimal formation mechanisms. It also offers an explanation for the confined spatial extent of the terrestrial planet building blocks without the requirement of extensive migration of Jupiter, which is required in the grand-tack scenario. © 2017. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Johnstone D.,National Research Council Canada | Johnstone D.,University of Victoria | Ciccone S.,National Research Council Canada | Ciccone S.,McMaster University | And 69 more authors.
Astrophysical Journal | Year: 2017

We present 450 and 850 μm submillimeter continuum observations of the IC 5146 star-forming region taken as part of the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope Gould Belt Survey. We investigate the location of bright submillimeter (clumped) emission with the larger-scale molecular cloud through comparison with extinction maps, and find that these denser structures correlate with higher cloud column density. Ninety-six individual submillimeter clumps are identified using FellWalker, and their physical properties are examined. These clumps are found to be relatively massive, ranging from 0.5 M⊙ to 116 M⊙ with a mean mass of 8 M⊙ and a median mass of 3.7 M⊙ . A stability analysis for the clumps suggests that the majority are (thermally) Jeans stable, with M/Mj < 1. We further compare the locations of known protostars with the observed submillimeter emission, finding that younger protostars, i.e., Class 0 and I sources, are strongly correlated with submillimeter peaks and that the clumps with protostars are among the most Jeans unstable. Finally, we contrast the evolutionary conditions in the two major star-forming regions within IC 5146: the young cluster associated with the Cocoon Nebula and the more distributed star formation associated with the Northern Streamer filaments. The Cocoon Nebula appears to have converted a higher fraction of its mass into dense clumps and protostars, the clumps are more likely to be Jeans unstable, and a larger fraction of these remaining clumps contain embedded protostars. The Northern Streamer, however, has a larger number of clumps in total and a larger fraction of the known protostars are still embedded within these clumps. © 2017. The American Astronomical Society. All rights reserved.


Pattle K.,University of Central Lancashire | Ward-Thompson D.,University of Central Lancashire | Kirk J.M.,University of Central Lancashire | Di Francesco J.,National Research Council Canada | And 70 more authors.
Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society | Year: 2017

We present observations of the Cepheus Flare obtained as part of the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT) Gould Belt Legacy Survey (GBLS) with the SCUBA-2 instrument. We produce a catalogue of sources found by SCUBA-2, and separate these into starless cores and protostars. We determine masses and densities for each of our sources, using source temperatures determined by the Herschel Gould Belt Survey. We compare the properties of starless cores in four different molecular clouds: L1147/58, L1172/74, L1251 and L1228. We find that the core mass functions for each region typically show shallower-than-Salpeter behaviour. We find that L1147/58 and L1228 have a high ratio of starless cores to Class II protostars, while L1251 and L1174 have a low ratio, consistent with the latter regions being more active sites of current star formation, while the former are forming stars less actively.We determine that if modelled as thermally supported Bonnor-Ebert spheres, most of our cores have stable configurations accessible to them.We estimate the external pressures on our cores using archival 13CO velocity dispersion measurements and find that our cores are typically pressure confined, rather than gravitationally bound.We perform a virial analysis on our cores, and find that they typically cannot be supported against collapse by internal thermal energy alone, due primarily to the measured external pressures. This suggests that the dominant mode of internal support in starless cores in the Cepheus Flare is either non-thermal motions or internal magnetic fields. © 2016 The Authors. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society.

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