Magnetic fields of the starless core L 1512

Lin, Sheng-Jun, Lai, Shih-Ping, Pattle, Kate, Berry, David, Clemens, Dan P., Pagani, Laurent, Ward-Thompson, Derek orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-1140-2761, Thieme, Travis J. and Ching, Tao-Chung (2024) Magnetic fields of the starless core L 1512. Astrophysical Journal, 961 (1). ISSN 0004-637X

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We present JCMT POL-2 850 um dust polarization observations and Mimir H band stellar polarization observations toward the starless core L1512. We detect the highly-ordered core-scale magnetic field traced by the POL-2 data, of which the field orientation is consistent with the parsec-scale magnetic fields traced by Planck data, suggesting the large-scale fields thread from the low-density region to the dense core region in this cloud. The surrounding magnetic field traced by the Mimir data shows a wider variation in the field orientation, suggesting there could be a transition of magnetic field morphology at the envelope scale. L1512 was suggested to be presumably older than 1.4 Myr in a previous study via time-dependent chemical analysis, hinting that the magnetic field could be strong enough to slow the collapse of L1512. In this study, we use the Davis-Chandrasekhar-Fermi method to derive a plane-of-sky magnetic field strength (Bpos) of 18±7 uG and an observed mass-to-flux ratio (λobs) of 3.5±2.4, suggesting that L1512 is magnetically supercritical. However, the absence of significant infall motion and the presence of an oscillating envelope are inconsistent with the magnetically supercritical condition. Using a Virial analysis, we suggest the presence of a hitherto hidden line-of-sight magnetic field strength of ~27 uG with a mass-to-flux ratio (λtot) of ~1.6, in which case both magnetic and kinetic pressures are important in supporting the L1512 core. On the other hand, L1512 may have just reached supercriticality and will collapse at any time.

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