3D magnetic-field morphology of the Perseus molecular cloud - INSU - Institut national des sciences de l'Univers Access content directly
Journal Articles Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A Year : 2022

3D magnetic-field morphology of the Perseus molecular cloud

M. Tahani
  • Function : Author
W. Lupypciw
  • Function : Author
J. Glover
  • Function : Author
R. Plume
  • Function : Author
J. L. West
  • Function : Author
R. Kothes
  • Function : Author
S. Inutsuka
  • Function : Author
M. -Y. Lee
  • Function : Author
T. Robishaw
  • Function : Author
L. B. G. Knee
  • Function : Author
J. C. Brown
  • Function : Author
Y. Doi
  • Function : Author
M. Haverkorn
  • Function : Author


Context. Despite recent observational and theoretical advances in mapping the magnetic fields associated with molecular clouds, their three-dimensional (3D) morphology remains unresolved. Multi-wavelength and multi-scale observations will allow us to paint a comprehensive picture of the magnetic fields of these star-forming regions.
Aims: We reconstructed the 3D magnetic field morphology associated with the Perseus molecular cloud and compared it with predictions of cloud-formation models. These cloud-formation models predict a bending of magnetic fields associated with filamentary molecular clouds. We compared the orientation and direction of this field bending with our 3D magnetic-field view of the Perseus cloud.
Methods: We used previous line-of-sight and plane-of-sky magnetic field observations as well as Galactic magnetic field models to reconstruct the complete 3D magnetic field vectors and morphology associated with the Perseus cloud.
Results: We approximated the 3D magnetic field morphology of the cloud as a concave arc that points in the decreasing longitude direction in the plane of the sky (from our point of view). This field morphology preserves a memory of the Galactic magnetic field. In order to compare this morphology to cloud-formation model predictions, we assume that the cloud retains a memory of its most recent interaction. After incorporating velocity observations, we find that the line-of-sight magnetic field observations are consistent with predictions of shock-cloud-interaction models.
Conclusions: To our knowledge, this is the first time that the 3D magnetic fields of a molecular cloud have been reconstructed. We find the 3D magnetic field morphology of the Perseus cloud to be consistent with the predictions of the shock-cloud-interaction model that describes the formation mechanism of filamentary molecular clouds.
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Dates and versions

insu-03745333 , version 1 (04-08-2022)



M. Tahani, W. Lupypciw, J. Glover, R. Plume, J. L. West, et al.. 3D magnetic-field morphology of the Perseus molecular cloud. Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A, 2022, 660, ⟨10.1051/0004-6361/202141170⟩. ⟨insu-03745333⟩
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