Correlation between the spatial distribution of circumstellar disks and massive stars in the open cluster NGC 6611 *,**
Compiled catalog and cluster parameters
Dipartimento di Scienze Fisiche ed Astronomiche, Universitá di Palermo, Piazza del Parlamento 1, 90134 Palermo, Italy e-mail: email@example.com
2 INAF – Osservatorio Astronomico di Palermo, Piazza del Parlamento 1, 90134 Palermo, Italy
Accepted: 12 October 2006
Context.The observation of young stars with circumstellar disks suggests that the disks are dissipated, starting from the inner region, by the radiation of the central star and eventually by the formation of rocky planetesimals, over a time scale of several million years. It was also shown that strong UV radiation emitted by nearby massive stars can heat a circumstellar disk up to some thousand degrees, inducing the photoevaporation of the gas. This process strongly reduces the dissipation time scale.
Aims.We study whether there exists a correlation between the spatial distribution of stars with circumstellar disks and the position of massive stars with spectral class earlier than B5, in the open cluster NGC 6611.
Methods.We created a multiband catalog of the cluster, down to , using optical data from a WFI observation at 2.2 m of ESO in the BVI bands, the 2MASS public point source catalog and an archival X-ray observation made with CHANDRA/ACIS. We selected the stars with infrared excess (due to the emission of a circumstellar disk) using suitable color indices independent of extinction, and studied their spatial distribution.
Results.The spatial distribution of the stars with K band excess (due to the presence of a circumstellar disk) is anti correlated with that of the massive stars: the disks are more frequent at large distances from these stars. We argue that this is in agreement with the hypothesis that the circumstellar disks are heated by the UV radiation from the massive stars and photoevaporated.
Key words: stars: formation / planetary systems: protoplanetary disks / stars: pre-main sequence / open cluster and associations: individual: NGC 6611 / infrared: stars / X-ray: stars
© ESO, 2007