A Lifetime of Influence: Abstracts, Talks, and Posters
 

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van den Heuvel

  

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A Near-Infrared Study of the Star-forming Region SMC-N88A

Gerard Testor
LERMA, Observatoire de Paris

Jean-Louis Lemaire
LERMA, Observatoire de Paris, Cergy Pontoise

Lars Kristensen
Sterrewacht, Leiden

David Field
Arhus University

Stephane Diana
LERMA, Cergy Pontoise

We present results from high spatial resolution (0.1-0.2 arcsec) J, H, Ks and L' imaging and Ks-band spectroscopy of the compact ionized blob SMC-N88A and its environment in the SMC, performed with the adaptative optics camera NAOS/CONICA at the ESO VLT. Our IR data reveal for the first time a morphology of N88A in unprecedented detail, and using colour-magnitude and color-color diagrams several young sources with infra-red excess are detected. We have discovered a small cluster (3.5 arcsecs ~ 1 pc diameter) of at least ten resolved stars of which three, are young massive stellar object (MYSO) candidates. This cluster is embedded in a very bright continuum. Three other probable YSOs are detected along a north-south bow-shaped thin 2.12 microns H2 filament at ~ 3 arcsecs east of N88B. In N88A, the young central bright star is the main exciting source and could be complex. Close to this star at 0.2 arcsec to the east, a very red core is detected. With its K-L > 4.5 mag it should be a high-mass protostellar object of class I. The H2 image of N88A resembles a shell of diameter about 2 arcsecs centered on the bright star. The shell is formed mainly by three bright components of which the brightest superposes the ionization front. The line ratios of H2 2-1 S(1) and 1-0 S(0) relative to 1-0 S(1) are indicative of a photodissociation region, rather than shocks.