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2017 Hot Sci @ STScI

The Herschel Orion Protostar Survey: Luminosity and Envelope Evolution

Presented by: William Fischer (Space Telescope Science Institute)
Category: Science Colloquia   Duration: 30 minutes   Broadcast date: July 19, 2017
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In the protostellar phase, low-mass stars assemble most of their ultimate main-sequence masses from infalling envelopes. A major open question is whether the primary mode of protostellar mass accretion is gradual, featuring slow changes in the infall rate over the 0.5 Myr duration of this phase, or episodic, featuring accretion that is concentrated in brief outbursts. With the Herschel Orion Protostar Survey (HOPS), we obtained well-sampled spectral energy distributions from 1.2 to 870 microns for over 300 protostars in the Orion molecular clouds. With these data, I place the protostars on a bolometric luminosity and temperature (BLT) plot, a common evolutionary diagram for young stellar objects. I show that the Orion BLT diagram can be explained with envelope masses that decline exponentially with time to form a range of stellar masses.