Properties of low-mass objects in NGC 2024

F. Comerón, G. H. Rieke, M. J. Rieke

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations


We have obtained deep JHK imaging of the central region of the NGC 2024 embedded cluster, allowing three-color measurements of 151 sources. We show that contamination by background sources is small, and we reject a small number of sources that are probably foreground. We use a Monte Carlo isochrone fitting technique to estimate the luminosities and masses of the low-mass members of the embedded cluster. We find that the IMF between ∼0.04 and ∼0.5 M can be fitted within the errors with a power law of slope -1.2 in linear mass units (or -0.2 in logarithmic units). There is no indication of a turnover of the IMF at the bottom of the main sequence; it appears to continue down to ∼0.04 Mg with no significant deviation (within our moderately large errors) from the power law. This estimate of the IMF includes only the primary members of binary (or multiple) systems. Of a subset of 35 sources, 24 (69%) appear to have infrared excesses indicating possible circumstellar disks, supporting arguments that disk formation is not inhibited in high-density clusters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)294-303
Number of pages10
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number1 PART I
StatePublished - 1996


  • H II regions
  • ISM: Individual (NGC 2024)
  • Open clusters and associations: Individual (NGC 2024)
  • Stars: Low-mass, brown dwarfs
  • Stars: Luminosity function, mass function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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