Scott J. Kenyon: Star Formation

Star formation is a central issue of modern astrophysics. We have a robust theory of stellar evolution, but we do not have a clear picture of how stars form out of clumps of gas in giant molecular clouds.

Every young star is born with a circumstellar disk of gas and dust. The disk is large enough and has enough mass to produce a planetary system similar to our own.

I use a combination of observations and theoretical models to improve our understanding of the early evolution of the young star and the conversion of the disk into a planetary system. I also work on larger surveys designed to acquire an accurate census of stars in several nearby star-forming regions.

Currently, I am working in three areas.

FU Orionis objects: Accretion in Action
Taurus-Auriga dark cloud
The Double Cluster: h & χ Per

The Taurus-Auriga dark cloud is the nearest and best-studied region of star formation.
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