Universiteit Leiden Universiteit Leiden

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Small scale kinematics of massive star-forming cores

Promotor: Prof.dr. E.F. van Dishoeck, Co-Promotor: M.R. Hogerheijde

Auteur K.S. Wang
Links Thesis in Leiden Repository

Unlike the formation of Solar-type stars, the formation of massive stars (M>8 Msun) is not yet well understood. For Solar-type protostars, the presence of circumstellar or protoplanetary disks which provide a path for mass accretion onto protostars is well established. However, to date only few cases of young massive stars show the evidence of circumstellar disks which support the idea that a scaled-up version of low-mass star formation could be applied to young massive stars. To what extend this hypothesis can be applied is still unclear and more observational evidences are required to characterize the physical properties of the disk-like structures around massive stars in order to understand how exactly massive stars gain their masses in the equatorial regions. In this thesis, we present high-resolution (sub)millimeter interferometric and single-dish observations of massive star-forming cores. We suggest that massive stars may form via disk accretion in some relatively isolated star-forming cores, while massive stars may form through competitive accretion in the central part of massive star-forming clusters. Our studies serve as the basis for the coming Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) studies at very high angular resolution.