A bubbling nearby molecular cloud: COMPLETE shells in Perseus

  • Arce H
  • Borkin M
  • Goodman A
 et al. 
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We present a study of the shells (and bubbles) in the Perseus molecular
cloud using the COMPLETE survey large-scale 12CO(1-0) and
13CO(1-0) maps. The 12 shells reported here are spread
throughout most of the Perseus cloud and have circular or arc-like
morphologies with a range in radius of about 0.1-3 pc. Most of them have
not been detected before most likely because maps of the region lacked
the coverage and resolution needed to distinguish them. The majority of
the shells are coincident with infrared nebulosity of similar shape and
have a candidate powering source near the center. We suggest that they
are formed by the interaction of spherical or very wide angle winds
powered by young stars inside or near the Perseus molecular
cloud—a cloud that is commonly considered to be forming mostly
low-mass stars. Two of the 12 shells are powered by high-mass stars
close to the cloud, while the others appear to be powered by low- or
intermediate-mass stars in the cloud. We argue that winds with a mass
loss rate of about 10-8 to 10-6 M
&sun; yr-1 are required to produce the
observed shells. Our estimates indicate that the energy input rate from
these stellar winds is similar to the turbulence dissipation rate. We
conclude that in Perseus the total energy input from both collimated
protostellar outflows and powerful spherical winds from young stars is
sufficient to maintain the turbulence in the molecular cloud.
Large-scale molecular line and IR continuum maps of a sample of clouds
will help determine the frequency of this phenomenon in other
star-forming regions.

Author-supplied keywords

  • ISM: bubbles
  • ISM: individual objects (Perseus)
  • stars: formation
  • stars: pre-main sequence
  • stars: winds, outflows
  • turbulence

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