Molecular outflows and a mid-infrared census of the massive star formation region associated with IRAS 18507+0121

D. S. Shepherd, M. S. Povich, B. A. Whitney, T. P. Robitaille, D. E.A. Nürnberger, L. Bronfman, D. P. Stark, R. Indebetouw, M. R. Meade, B. L. Babler

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55 Scopus citations


We have observed the central region of the infrared-dark cloud filament associated with IRAS 18507+0121 at millimeter wavelengths in CO(J = 1-0), 13CO(J = 1-0), and C18O(J = 1-0) line emission and with Spitzer at midinfrared wavelengths. Five massive outflows from two cloud cores were discovered. Three outflows are centered on or near an ultracompact (UC) H II region (G34.4+0.23), while the remaining two outflows originate from the millimeter core G34.4+0.23 MM. Modeling of the spectral energy distributions of the mid-infrared sources identified 31 young stellar objects in the filament with a combined stellar mass of ∼ 127 ± 27 M. An additional 22 sources were identified as probable cluster members based on the presence of strong 24 μm emission. The total star formation efficiency in the G34.4 cloud filament is estimated to be ∼7%, while the massive and intermediate-mass star formation efficiency in the entire cloud filament is estimated to be roughly 2%. A comparison of the gravitational binding energy with the outflow kinetic energy suggests that the compact core containing G34.4+0.23 MM is being destroyed by its molecular outflows, whereas the outflows associated with the more massive core surrounding the G34.4 UC H II region are not likely to totally disrupt the cloud. In addition, a qualitative evaluation of the region appears to suggest that stars in this region may have formed in two stages: first lower mass stars formed and then, a few Myr later, the more massive stars began to form.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)464-482
Number of pages19
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1
StatePublished - Nov 1 2007


  • H II regions
  • ISM: molecules
  • Stars: formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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