Search for OB stars running away from young star clusters
I. NGC 6611
Astronomical Institute, Ruhr-University Bochum, Universitätstrasse 150, 44780 Bochum, Germany e-mail: email@example.com
2 Sternberg Astronomical Institute, Moscow State University, Universitetskij Pr. 13, Moscow 119992, Russia e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 2 September 2008
N-body simulations have shown that the dynamical decay of the young (~1 Myr) Orion Nebula cluster could be responsible for the loss of at least half of its initial content of OB stars. This result suggests that other young stellar systems could also lose a significant fraction of their massive stars at the very beginning of their evolution. To confirm this expectation, we used the Mid-Infrared Galactic Plane Survey (completed by the Midcourse Space Experiment satellite) to search for bow shocks around a number of young (several Myr) clusters and OB associations. We discovered dozens of bow shocks generated by OB stars running away from these stellar systems, supporting the idea of significant dynamical loss of OB stars. In this paper, we report the discovery of three bow shocks produced by O-type stars ejected from the open cluster NGC 6611 (M16). One of the bow shocks is associated with the O9.5Iab star HD165319, which was suggested to be one of “the best examples for isolated Galactic high-mass star formation” (de Wit et al. 2005, A&A, 437, 247). Possible implications of our results for the origin of field OB stars are discussed.
Key words: stars: individual: BD -14° 5040 / stars: individual: HD 165319 / open clusters and associations: general / open clusters and associations: individual: NGC 6611 / ISM: individual objects: RCW 158
© ESO, 2008