A Caltech Library Service

The Galactic Center Cloud G0.253+0.016: A Massive Dense Cloud with low Star Formation Potential

Kauffmann, Jens and Pillai, Thushara and Zhang, Qizhou (2013) The Galactic Center Cloud G0.253+0.016: A Massive Dense Cloud with low Star Formation Potential. Astrophysical Journal Letters, 765 (2). Art. No. L35. ISSN 2041-8205. doi:10.1088/2041-8205/765/2/L35.

PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


We present the first interferometric molecular line and dust emission maps for the Galactic Center (GC) cloud G0.253+0.016, observed using CARMA and the SMA. This cloud is very dense, and concentrates a mass exceeding the Orion Molecular Cloud Complex (2 × 10^5 M_☉) into a radius of only 3 pc, but it is essentially starless. G0.253+0.016 therefore violates "star formation laws" presently used to explain trends in galactic and extragalactic star formation by a factor ~45. Our observations show a lack of dense cores of significant mass and density, thus explaining the low star formation activity. Instead, cores with low densities and line widths ≾1 km s^(–1)—probably the narrowest lines reported for the GC region to date—are found. Evolution over several 10^5 yr is needed before more massive cores, and possibly an Arches-like stellar cluster, could form. Given the disruptive dynamics of the GC region, and the potentially unbound nature of G0.253+0.016, it is not clear that this evolution will happen.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Additional Information:© 2013 American Astronomical Society. Received 2012 June 12; accepted 2012 December 25; published 2013 February 22. We thank S. Longmore for giving us access to Longmore et al. (2012) in advance of publication, D. Lis and K. Menten for enlightening discussions, and the anonymous referee for making the Letter more readable. J.K. is grateful to D. Li and P. Goldsmith, his hosts at JPL, for making this work possible. Part of the research was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under a contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. T.P. acknowledges support from CARMA, which is supported by the National Science Foundation through grant AST 05-40399. J.K. acknowledges support from Dewey, Cheetham & Howe (Cambridge, MA). Facilities: SMA, CARMA, Spitzer
Funding AgencyGrant Number
NSFAST 05-40399
Subject Keywords:Galaxy: center; ISM: clouds; stars: formation
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20130409-102732609
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:The Galactic Center Cloud G0.253+0.016: A Massive Dense Cloud with low Star Formation Potential Jens Kauffmann et al. 2013 ApJ 765 L35
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:37823
Deposited By: Ruth Sustaita
Deposited On:09 Apr 2013 17:45
Last Modified:09 Nov 2021 23:31

Repository Staff Only: item control page