T Tauri Jet Physics Resolved Near the Launching Region with theHubble Space Telescope

Deirdre Coffey, Francesca Bacciotti, Linda Podio
2008 Astrophysical Journal  
We present an analysis of the gas physics at the base of jets from five T Tauri stars based on high angular resolution optical spectra, using the Hubble Space Telescope Imaging Spectrograph (HST/STIS). The spectra refer to a region within 100 AU of the star, i.e. where the collimation of the jet has just taken place. We form PV images of the line ratios to get a global picture of the flow excitation. We then apply a specialised diagnostic technique to find the electron density, ionisation
more » ... y, ionisation fraction, electron temperature and total density. Our results are in the form of PV maps of the obtained quantities, in which the gas behaviour is resolved as a function of both radial velocity and distance from the jet axis. They highlight a number of interesting physical features of the jet collimation region, including regions of extremely high density, asymmetries with respect to the axis, and possible shock signatures. Finally, we estimate the jet mass and angular momentum outflow rates, both of which are fundamental parameters in constraining models of accretion/ejection structures, particularily if the parameters can be determined close to the jet footpoint. Comparing mass flow rates for cases where the latter is available in the literature (i.e. DG Tau, RW Aur and CW Tau) reveals a mass ejection-to-accretion ratio of 0.01 - 0.07. Finally, where possible (i.e. DG Tau and CW Tau), both mass and angular momentum outflow rates have been resolved into higher and lower velocity jet material. For the clearer case of DG Tau, this revealed that the more collimated higher velocity component plays a dominant role in mass and angular momentum transport.
doi:10.1086/592343 fatcat:ylqvwuryebf3lew2zqggzkggky