Mon. Not. R. Astron. Soc., 396, 1851-1863 (2009/July-2)
The initial conditions of isolated star formation - IX. Akari mapping of an externally heated pre-stellar core.
NUTTER D., STAMATELLOS D. and WARD-THOMPSON D.
Abstract (from CDS):
We present observations of L1155 and L1148 in the Cepheus molecular cloud, taken using the Far Infrared Surveyor (FIS) instrument on the Akari satellite. We compare these data to submillimetre data taken using the Submillimetre Common-User Bolometer Array (SCUBA) camera on the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope, and far-infrared data taken with the imaging photo-polarimeter (ISOPHOT) camera on board the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) satellite. The Akari data cover a similar spectral window and are consistent with the ISO data. All of the data show a relation between the position of the peak of emission and the wavelength for the core of L1155. We interpret this as a temperature gradient. We fit modified blackbody curves to the spectral energy distributions at two positions in the core and see that the central core in L1155 (L1155C) is approximately 2° warmer at one edge than it is in the centre. We consider a number of possible heating sources and conclude that the A6V star BD+67 1263 is the most likely candidate. This star is at a distance of 0.7pc from the front of L1155C in the plane of the sky. We carry out radiative transfer modelling of the L1155C core including the effects from the nearby star. We find that we can generate a good fit to the observed data at all wavelengths, and demonstrate that the different morphologies of the core at different wavelengths can be explained by the observed 2° temperature gradient. The L1148 core exhibits a similar morphology to that of L1155C, and the data are also consistent with a temperature gradient across the core. In this case, the most likely heating source is the star BD197053. Our findings illustrate very clearly that the apparent observed morphology of a pre-stellar core can be highly dependent on the wavelength of the observation, and that temperature gradients must be taken into account before converting images into column density distributions. This is important to note when interpreting Akari and Spitzer data and will also be significant for Herschel data.