MANY of the compact near-infrared sources observed in the central parsec of our Galaxy have been shown to be very massive, luminous blue stars with strong helium lines and fast winds, perhaps similar to Wolf-Rayet stars1-3; and the complex near-infrared source IRS16, which appears to be the central concentration of such sources, has now been shown3 to consist of about 20 luminous blue stars, not 100 main-sequence stars, as had been suggested earlier4. These young blue stars, rather than any object associated with the nearby compact radio source SgrA* (ref. 8), may be the predominant source of ionizing radiation1 and hydrodynamic activity5-7 in the inner two parsecs of the Galaxy. An earlier argument4 that the distribution of IRS16 components precludes the existence of a million-solar-mass black hole at or near SgrA* remains valid even if there are fewer than two dozen stars in IRS16. Here I argue further that the presence of young stars in this region is incompatible with the presence of a giant black hole or any other centrally condensed mass, because tidal forces would have inhibited star formation.
|Number of pages||2|
|Publication status||Published - 10-Sep-1992|