We examine whether existing data in clusters, both old and young, and in the field of the Galactic disk and halo is consistent with a universal slope for the initial mass function (IMF). The most reasonable statement that can be made at the current time is that there is no strong evidence to support a claim of any real variations in this slope. If the IMF slope is universal then this in itself is remarkable implying that variations in metallicity, gas density or other environmental factors in the star formation process play no part in determining the slope of the mass function.
The Seventh Astrophysical Conference: Star formation, near and far
- Pub Date:
- February 1997
- Open clusters in the Milky Way;
- Globular clusters in the Milky Way;
- Mass and mass distribution;
- Galactic halo;
- 10 pages, postscript. To appear in "Proceedings 7th Annual Astrophysics Conference in Maryland-STAR FORMATION NEAR AND FAR"