The Spitzer Legacy Survey of the Cygnus-X Region

First Author:
Joseph Hora
Email: jhora AT
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
60 Garden St.., MS-65
Cambridge, MA 02138-1516
Bontemps, Sylvain, Observatoire de Bordeaux
Megeath, Thomas, University of Toledo
Schneider, Nicola, CEA/Saclay
Motte, Frederique, CEA/Saclay
Carey, Sean, SSC
Simon, Robert, University of Cologne
Keto, Eric, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Smith, Howard, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Allen, Lori, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Gutermuth, Robert, Smith College
Fazio, Giovanni, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics
Adams, Joseph, Cornell University
Cygnus-X 24micron Processing Team, ,


We describe the status and initial results from the Spitzer Legacy survey of the Cygnus-X region, a massive star formation complex containing the richest known concentration of massive protostars and the largest OB associations within the nearest 2 kpc. This unbiased survey of 24 sq degrees in Cygnus-X with the IRAC and MIPS instruments has the sensitivity to detect young stars to a limit of 0.5 Msun. With this survey we will 1) analyze the evolution of high mass protostars with a large and statistically robust sample at a single distance, 2) study the role of clustering in high mass star formation, 3) study low mass star formation in a massive molecular cloud complex dominated by the energetics of ~100 O-stars, 4) assess what fraction of all young low mass stars in the nearest 2 kpc are forming in this one massive complex, and 5) provide an unbiasedsurvey of the region and produce a legacy data set which can be used in conjunction with future studies of this region (e.g., with Herschel and JWST). We are also using the IRS to obtain 5-40 micron spectra of a sample of massive stars that are forming in the Cygnus-X region. The selected sample contains known IRAS/MSX sources and infrared-quiet sources detected in mm-surveys and the deeper Spitzer observations, thus spanning a range of mass and evolutionary stages which will allow us to probe the earliest stages of massive protostars. We will present initial results from the imaging survey and the spectra of the selected massive protostars.
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