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Stellar populations in young star clusters - The power of HST photometry and IFU spectroscopy

Presented by: Peter Zeidler (JHU/STScI)
Category: Special Interest   Duration: 1 hour   Broadcast date: February 14, 2019
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Most stars form in clustered environments, yet the long-term evolution of these systems is not well understood. We are studying resolved young star clusters, located in the Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds, to determine their initial conditions. Combining multi-epoch, multi-band HST optical and near-infrared photometry with optical, ground-based MUSE integral field spectroscopy has proven to be an effective method for studying the stellar population of these clusters down to the hydrogen burning limit including the 3D kinematics of stars and gas kinematics, as well as the stellar binary fraction. Besides the general properties of Wd2 (mass, age, and distance), the high-resolution HST data revealed that Wd2 is composed of two sub-clumps and its stellar population is highly, primordial mass segregated. The detection of Ha excess emitters showed the presence of active star formation throughout the cluster. Additional epochs allow us to study stellar proper motions and the stellar binary fraction. The MUSE data allows us to measure stellar radial velocities down to 1-2 "M" _? with an accuracy of 1-3 "km" ?"s" . First results hint that the Wd2 stars follow a bimodal velocity distribution. The velocity structure of a circular cavity carved into the intracluster gas, as well as a pillar like structure show major interaction between the stellar population of Wd2 and the surrounding HII region.Most stars form in clustered environments, yet the long-term evolution of these systems is not well understood. We are studying resolved young star clusters, located in the Milky Way and the Magellanic Clouds, to determine their initial conditions. Combining multi-epoch, multi-band HST optical and near-infrared photometry with optical, ground-based MUSE integral field spectroscopy has proven to be an effective method for studying the stellar population of these clusters down to the hydrogen burning limit including the 3D kinematics of stars and gas kinematics, as well as the stellar binary fraction. Besides the general properties of Wd2 (mass, age, and distance), the high-resolution HST data revealed that Wd2 is composed of two sub-clumps and its stellar population is highly, primordial mass segregated. The detection of Ha excess emitters showed the presence of active star formation throughout the cluster. Additional epochs allow us to study stellar proper motions and the stellar binary fraction. The MUSE data allows us to measure stellar radial velocities down to 1-2 "M" _? with an accuracy of 1-3 "km" ?"s" . First results hint that the Wd2 stars follow a bimodal velocity distribution. The velocity structure of a circular cavity carved into the intracluster gas, as well as a pillar like structure show major interaction between the stellar population of Wd2 and the surrounding HII region.