Study showed that VLA 1623 West is a young protostellar disk

(ORDO NEWS) — Astronomers at Queen’s University in Kingston and their colleagues used the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) to observe the mysterious source known as VLA 1623 West.

Protostellar disks are accretion disks around newborn stars, continuously delivering gas from the environment to the protostars.

VLA 1623 is one of the youngest protostellar systems. It is located in the Rho Ophiuchus cloud complex, about 453 light years away.

The system consists of four separate entities: protobinary VLA 1623Aa and VLA 1623Ab, associated with another companion VLA 1623B, and VLA 1623 West. The nature of VLA 1623 West is still uncertain.

A team of astronomers led by Arnaud Michel conducted deep ALMA observations of VLA 1623 West (or VLA 1623W for short) to better determine its origin.

The analyzed models suggest that VLA 1623W is a young protostellar disk with a high inclination. The study showed that large dust particles had not yet had time to settle in its central part.

It was found that the radiation from the disk is relatively constant along the principal axis and has not reached a maximum.

Astronomers recorded separate sources of radiation in the disk at wavelengths of 0.87 and 1.3 millimeters.

It is assumed that these sources are associated with flares in areas where millimeter dust particles accumulate, and these flares are limited to the outer regions of the disk.

The authors of the paper added that further observations of VLA 1623W at millimeter wavelengths are required to confirm disk flares.

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