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Paper: The Perseus Cloud
Volume: 4, Handbook of Star Forming Regions:
Volume I, The Northern Sky
Page: 308
Authors: Bally, J.; Walawender, J.; Johnstone, D.; Kirk, H.; Goodman, A.
Abstract: The Perseus molecular cloud and its surroundings contain several regions of active or recent star formation lying within about 300 pc of the Sun (see Figure 1). Roughly a dozen OB and over a thousand lower mass stars younger than 6 Myr make up the 50 pc diameter Perseus OB 2 association. Recent supernovae in the Per OB2 association drive an expanding HI supershell into the surrounding interstellar medium. A run-away star from this association, ΞΎ Persi, illuminates and ionizes a portion of this ring, producing the California Nebula (NGC 1499, Sh-2 220). The 104 MβŠ™ Perseus molecular cloud is the closest such object actively forming large numbers of low to intermediate-mass stars. The eastern end of the cloud is associated with the 2 – 4 Myr old cluster IC 348 that contains several hundred young stars. However, the western portion of the Perseus cloud contains the most active sites of current star formation, including the 150 member NGC 1333 cluster, the small stellar aggregates associated with Barnard 1, L1448, L1455, and additional cloud cores which are producing smaller groups of young stars. Narrow-band visual wavelength surveys have led to the discovery of over a hundred individual Herbig-Haro objects. Studies of outflows in the Perseus molecular cloud have illuminated their contribution to the generation of turbulent motions in the surrounding gas, the disruption of cloud cores, and the self regulation of star formation. In this review, we cover the region of the sky from about l = 150° to 180° and b = βˆ’30° to 0°, and the young stars, clusters, and clouds which lie between 200 and 400 pc from the Sun with ages of less than about 15 Myr with an emphasis on the Perseus molecular cloud. This is the sphere of influence of the Per OB2 association. We discuss the 20° diameter Per OB2 supershell, the OB association, its relationship to surrounding molecular gas, and on-going star formation within the Perseus molecular cloud.
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