Disk Evolution Study Through Imaging of Nearby Young Stars (DESTINYS): Characterization of the young star T CrA and its circumstellar environment
Context. In recent years, a new hot topic has emerged in the star and planet formation field, namely, the interaction between the circumstellar disk and its birth cloud. The birth environments of young stars leave strong imprints on the star itself and their surroundings. In this context, we present a detailed analysis of the rich circumstellar environment around the young Herbig Ae/Be star T CrA.
Aims: Our aim is to understand the nature of the stellar system and the extended circumstellar structures, as seen in scattered light images.
Methods: We conducted our analysis on the basis of a set of combined archival data and new adaptive optics images at a high contrast and high resolution.
Results: The scattered light images reveal the presence of a complex environment around T CrA, composed of a bright, forward-scattering rim of the disk's surface that is seen at very high inclinations, along with a dark lane of the disk midplane, bipolar outflows, and streamer features that are likely tracing infalling material from the surrounding birth cloud onto the disk. The analysis of the light curve suggests that the star is a binary with a period of 29.6 yr, confirming previous assertions based on spectro-astrometry. The comparison of the scattered light images with the ALMA continuum and 12CO (2-1) line emission shows that the disk is in Keplerian rotation and the northern side of the outflowing material is receding, while the southern side is approaching the observer. The overall system lies on different geometrical planes. The orbit of the binary star is perpendicular to the outflows and is seen edge on. The disk is itself seen edge-on, with a position angle of ~7°. The direction of the outflows seen in scattered light is in agreement with the direction of the more distant molecular hydrogen emission-line objects (MHOs) associated with the star. Modeling of the spectral energy distribution using a radiative transfer scheme is in good agreement with the proposed configuration, as well as the hydrodynamical simulation performed using a smoothed particle hydrodynamics code.
Conclusions: We find evidence of streamers of accreting material around T CrA. These streamers connect the filament, along which T CrA is forming along with the outer parts of the disk, suggesting that the strong misalignment between the inner and outer disk is due to a change in the direction of the angular momentum of the material accreting on the disk during the late phase of star formation. This impacts the accretion taking place in the components of the binary, favoring the growth of the primary with respect the secondary, in contrast to the case of aligned disks.
Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Pub Date:
- March 2023
- circumstellar matter;
- stars: pre-main sequence;
- protoplanetary disks;
- ISM: individual objects: TCrA;
- ISM: jets and outflows;
- Astrophysics - Solar and Stellar Astrophysics;
- Astrophysics - Earth and Planetary Astrophysics;
- Astrophysics - Astrophysics of Galaxies
- 17 pages, 14 figures