radiation-driven implosion (RDI)
forukaft az râh-e tâbeš
Fr.: implosion induit par rayonnement
A hydrodynamic process occurring in star forming regions where a neutral cloud (→ clump) is subjected to the intense ultraviolet radiation of a newly-born → massive star. The gas within the layer exposed to the radiation is ionized and forms an → ionization front at the front surface. The increased pressure due to temperature rise at the top layer drives an → isothermal → shock front into the clump, which compresses the neutral gas ahead of it, below the surface. A density → gradient builds up leading rapidly to the formation of a condensed core. With further concentration of the gas, the hydrogen density in the center of the core increases drastically, reaching 108 cm-3 about 4 x 105 years after the first impact of the ionizing radiation on the clump, according to current models (e.g. Bertoldi 1989, ApJ 346, 735; Miao et al. 2006, MNRAS 369, 143, and references therein). The core can develop further to form a → cometary globule or → collapse under its self-gravity, eventually giving rise to new → low-mass stars (→ triggered star formation). In the process, the whole clump accelerates away from the initial ionizing star. Indeed, the gas evaporated off the side of the clump facing the ionizing star can create a rocket effect accelerating the clump away from the star (with a velocity of up to 5 km s-1), while losing part of its initial mass.