Name/Affiliation: Kevin Covey (Lowell Observatory)
A Kinematic Survey of the Perseus Molecular Cloud: Results from the APOGEE Infrared Survey of Young Nebulous Clusters (IN-SYNC)
Demographic studies of stellar clusters indicate that relatively few persist as bound structures for 100 Myrs or longer. If cluster dispersal is a 'violent' process, it could strongly influence the formation and early evolution of stellar binaries and planetary systems. Unfortunately, measuring the dynamical state of 'typical' (i.e., ~300-1000 member) young star clusters has been difficult, particularly for clusters still embedded within their parental molecular cloud. The near infrared spectrograph for the Apache Point Observatory Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE), which can measure precise radial velocities for 230 cluster stars simultaneously, is uniquely suited to diagnosing the dynamics of Galactic star formation regions. We give an overview of the INfrared Survey of Young Nebulous Clusters (IN-SYNC), an APOGEE ancillary science program studying the kinematics of young stars in the Perseus and Orion star forming regions. Some models predict a super-virial state for clusters that have just dispersed their molecular cloud; our observations, by contrast, rule out a significantly super-virial velocity dispersion in IC 348, a young cluster in Perseus that has recently expelled its primordial gas. We conclude with ongoing work to measure velocity dispersions and characterize stellar populations in NGC 1333, an embedded cluster in Perseus, and the ONC & L1641 molecular filament in Orion, and plans to survey additional young clusters as part of the APOGEE-2 survey.