The spitzer c2d survey of large, nearby, interstellar clouds. III. Perseus observed with Irac

Jes K. Jørgensen, Paul M. Harvey, Neal J. Evans, Tracy L. Huard, Lori E. Allen, Alicia Porras, Geoffrey A. Blake, Tyler L. Bourke, Nicholas Chapman, Lucas Cieza, David W. Koerner, Shih Ping Lai, Lee G. Mundy, Philip C. Myers, Deborah L. Padgett, Luisa Rebull, Anneila I. Sargent, William Spiesman, Karl R. Stapelfeldt, Ewine F. Van DishoeckZahed Wahhaj, Kaisa E. Young

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

179 Scopus citations


We present observations of 3.86 deg2 of the Perseus molecular cloud complex with the Spitzer Space Telescope Infrared Array Camera (IRAC). The maps show strong extended emission arising from shocked H2 in outflows and from polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon features. More than 120,000 sources are extracted toward the cloud. Based on their IRAC colors and comparison to off-cloud and extragalactic fields, we identify 400 candidate young stellar objects. About two-thirds of these are associated with the young clusters IC 348 and NGC 1333, while the last third is distributed over the remaining cloud. The young stellar objects are classified according to the slope of their spectral energy distributions. Significant differences are found between the numbers of embedded Class I objects and more evolved Class II objects in IC 348, NGC 1333 and the remaining cloud, with the embedded Class I and "flat-spectrum" YSOs constituting 14%, 36% and 47% of the total number of YSOs identified in each of these regions. The high number of Class I objects in the extended cloud (61% of the Class I objects in the entire cloud) suggests that a significant fraction of the current star formation occurs outside the two main clusters. Finally, we discuss a number of outflows and identify their driving sources, including the deeply embedded Class 0 sources outside the two main clusters. The Class 0 objects are detected by Spitzer and have very red [3.6] - [4.5] colors, but they do not show similarly red [5.8] - [8.0] colors. The Class 0 objects are easily identifiable in color-color diagrams but are problematic to extract automatically due to the extended emission from shocked gas or scattered light in cavities related to the associated outflows.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1246-1263
Number of pages18
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2 I
StatePublished - Jul 10 2006


  • ISM: clouds
  • Infrared: stars
  • Stars: formation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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