Observations of Infalling and Rotational Motions on a 1,000-AU Scale around 17 Class 0 and 0/I Protostars: Hints of Disk Growth and Magnetic Braking? [SSA]


We perform imaging and analyses of SMA 1.3 mm continuum, C18O (2-1) and 12CO (2-1) line data of 17 Class 0 and 0/I protostars to study their gas kinematics on a 1,000-AU scale. Continuum and C18O (2-1) emission are detected toward all the sample sources and show central primary components with sizes of ~600-1,500 AU associated with protostars. The velocity gradients in C18O (2-1) have wide ranges of orientations from parallel to perpendicular to the outflows, with magnitudes from ~1 to ~530 km/s/pc. We construct a simple kinematic model to reproduce the observed velocity gradients, estimate the infalling and rotational velocities, and infer the disk radii and the protostellar masses. The inferred disk radii range from <5 AU to >500 AU with estimated protostellar masses from <0.1 Msun to >1 Msun. Our results hint that both large and small disks are possibly present around Class 0 protostars, which could be a sign of disk growth at the Class 0 stage. In addition, the directions of the overall velocity gradients in 7 out of the 17 sources are close to perpendicular to their outflow axes, which is a signature of significant rotational motions. From our model fitting, the specific angular momenta in these sources are estimated to be >2E-4 km/s*pc, suggesting that magnetic braking is unlikely efficient on a 1,000-AU scale in these Class 0 and 0/I sources. In a sub-sample with observed magnetic field orientations, we find no source with large specific angular momenta together with closely aligned magnetic field and outflow axes. This possibly hints that the magnetic field, if originally aligned with the rotational axis, can play a role in removing angular momentum from infalling material at the Class 0 stage. We discuss our results in comparison with theoretical models of collapsing dense cores with and without magnetic fields in the context of disk formation.

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H. Yen, P. Koch, S. Takakuwa, et. al.
Mon, 8 Dec 14

Comments: Accepted by ApJ