The JCMT BISTRO Survey: The Magnetic Field Strength in the Orion A Filament

Pattle, Katherine M orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-8557-3582, Ward-Thompson, Derek orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-1140-2761, Berry, David, Hatchell, Jennifer, Chen, Huei-Ru, Pon, Andy, Koch, Patrick M., Kwon, Woojin, Kim, Jongsoo et al (2017) The JCMT BISTRO Survey: The Magnetic Field Strength in the Orion A Filament. The Astrophysical Journal, 846 (2). pp. 122-143. ISSN 0004-637X

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We determine the magnetic field strength in the OMC 1 region of the Orion A filament via a new implementation of the Chandrasekhar-Fermi method using observations performed as part of the James Clerk Maxwell Telescope (JCMT) B-Fields In Star-Forming Region Observations (BISTRO) survey with the POL-2 instrument. We combine BISTRO data with archival SCUBA-2 and HARP observations to find a plane-of-sky magnetic field strength in OMC 1 of B_pos=6.6±4.7 mG, where δB_pos=4.7 mG represents a predominantly systematic uncertainty. We develop a new method for measuring angular dispersion, analogous to unsharp masking. We find a magnetic energy density of ~1.7×10^-7 Jm^-3 in OMC 1, comparable both to the gravitational potential energy density of OMC 1 (~10^-7 Jm^-3), and to the energy density in the Orion BN/KL outflow (~10^-7 Jm^-3). We find that neither the Alfvén velocity in OMC 1 nor the velocity of the super-Alfvénic outflow ejecta is sufficiently large for the BN/KL outflow to have caused large-scale distortion of the local magnetic field in the ~500-year lifetime of the outflow. Hence, we propose that the hour-glass field morphology in OMC 1 is caused by the distortion of a primordial cylindrically-symmetric magnetic field by the gravitational fragmentation of the filament and/or the gravitational interaction of the BN/KL and S clumps. We find that OMC 1 is currently in or near magnetically-supported equilibrium, and that the current large-scale morphology of the BN/KL outflow is regulated by the geometry of the magnetic field in OMC 1, and not vice versa.

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