Magnetic fields and radiative feedback in the star formation process

Daniel James Price, Matthew R Bate

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Star formation is a complex process involving the interplay of many physical effects, including gravity, turbulent gas dynamics, magnetic fields and radiation. Our understanding of the process has improved substantially in recent years, primarily as a result of our increased ability to incorporate the relevant physics in numerical calculations of the star formation process. In this contribution we present an overview of our recent studies of star cluster formation in turbulent, magnetised clouds using self-gravitating radiation-magnetohydrodynamicscalculations[1, 2]. Our incorporation of magnetic fields and radiative transfer into the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics method are discussed. We highlight how magnetic fields and radiative heating of the gas around newborn stars can solve several of the key puzzles in star formation, including an explanation for why star formation is such a slow and inefficient process. However, the presence of magnetic fields at observed strengths in collapsing protostellar cores also leads to problems on smaller scales, including a difficulty in forming protostellar discs and binary stars [3, 4], which suggests that our understanding of the role of magnetic fields in star formation is not yet complete.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlasmas in the Laboratory and the Universe: Interactions, Patterns and Turbulence
EditorsGuiseppe Bertin, Franca DeLuca, Guiseppe Lodato, Roberto Pozzoli, Massimiliano Rome
Place of PublicationMelville NY USA
PublisherAmerican Institute of Physics
Pages205 - 218
Number of pages14
ISBN (Print)9780735407879
Publication statusPublished - 2010
EventInternational Symposium Plasmas in the Laboratory and the Universe - Como, Italy, Melville NY USA
Duration: 1 Jan 2010 → …


ConferenceInternational Symposium Plasmas in the Laboratory and the Universe
CityMelville NY USA
Period1/01/10 → …

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