PI: Michael Alexander, Lehigh University, email@example.com
Address: Physics Department, 16 Memorial Drive East, Bethlehem, PA 18015, USA
CoI: Matthew Povich, California State Polytechnic University - Pomona
CoI: M. Virginia McSwain, Lehigh University
Title: Unveiling Hidden Massive Stars: Star Formation and the IMF in Carina
Abstract: We propose two nights of observations with the OSIRIS IR spectrograph on SOAR to obtain spectra for a large sample of massive star candidates within the Carina Nebula. Target stars have been identified as OB candidates through the use of combined X-ray emission and IR SED fitting and are too extincted to be readily observed at optical wavelengths. We will obtain K-band spectroscopy of 56 highly extincted stars in order to identify their spectral type and luminosity class. The proposed observations will confirm or reject individual stars as massive members of the Carina nebula star forming complex. The placement of these stars around the nebula will address questions on the process of triggered star formation, and the wide distribution of targets may shed light on the idea that OB stars can form in isolation. Additionally, any new OB stars will bolster the high-mass end of the stellar IMF and lead to a more accurate determine of the total stellar mass and a better understanding of the recent star formation history within the region.
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