Institute of Astronomy

Young star clusters near the Galactic centre - their orbital motion and mysterious formation

SpeakerTalk DateTalk Series
Andrea Stolte, Bonn27 October 2011Institute of Astronomy Colloquia


The Galactic center is the most efficient, and most extreme star-forming environment in the Milky Way. It brings forth some of the largest star-formation complexes, such as the Sgr B2 complex, and richest young star clusters. The Arches and Quintuplet star clusters, at a projected distance of 30 pc from the supermassive black hole, are among the most massive, young starburst clusters that formed in the Galactic disk within the past 5 Myr. Proper motion studies with adaptive optics instruments allowed us to measure the orbital motion of these star clusters. Both clusters appear to share very similar orbits in the inner Galaxy, with their orbital velocities being substantially larger than expected from circular orbits. I will present constraints on their orbital motions and discuss possible formation scenarios of these massive clusters by inchanneling of molecular clouds via the bar potential.