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The formation and fragmentation of disks around primordial protostars

Clark, Paul, Glover, S. C. O., Smith, R. J., Greif, T. H., Klessen, R. S. and Bromm, V. 2011. The formation and fragmentation of disks around primordial protostars. Science 331 (6020) , pp. 1040-1042. 10.1126/science.1198027

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Abstract

The very first stars to form in the universe heralded an end to the cosmic dark ages and introduced new physical processes that shaped early cosmic evolution. Until now, it was thought that these stars lived short, solitary lives, with only one extremely massive star, or possibly a very wide binary system, forming in each dark-matter minihalo. Here we describe numerical simulations that show that these stars were, to the contrary, often members of tight multiple systems. Our results show that the disks that formed around the first young stars were unstable to gravitational fragmentation, possibly producing small binary and higher-order systems that had separations as small as the distance between Earth and the Sun.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
Publisher: American Association for the Advancement of Science
ISSN: 0036-8075
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2017 06:25
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/59836

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Cited 162 times in Web of Science. View in Web of Science.

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