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Astron. Astrophys. 337, 113-124 (1998)

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Discovery of a late-type stellar population associated with the Gould Belt

P. Guillout 1, 2, M.F. Sterzik 1, J.H.M.M Schmitt 1, 3, C. Motch 2 and R. Neuhäuser 1

1 Max-Planck-Institut für Extraterrestrische Physik, D-85740 Garching, Germany
2 Observatoire Astronomique, CNRS UMR 7550, 11 rue de l'Université, F-67000 Strasbourg, France
3 Universität Hamburg, Hamburger Sternwarte, Gojenbergsweg 112, D-21029 Hamburg, Germany

Received 12 March 1998 / Accepted 28 April 1998


We report the detection of a late-type stellar population in the direction of the Gould Belt among stars found by cross-correlating the ROSAT All-Sky Survey with the Tycho catalog. Regions of the Gould Belt located between l = [FORMULA] and l = [FORMULA] exhibit a strong density enhancement of X-ray active stars with associated X-ray luminosities LX = [FORMULA] erg s-1 typical for very young coronae. In contrast, other regions show average galactic plane characteristics. Stars accounting for the excess appear to extend from the solar vicinity up to about 300 pc towards a quadrant centered on l = [FORMULA], but their distance distribution only extends to 180 pc from the Sun towards l = [FORMULA]. The structure can be understood as a disk-like arrangement of stars having the same inclination towards the galactic plane as the Gould Belt and extending to its outer boundary. We suggest that these stars are the residuals of original associations and interpret them as the late-type stellar population of the Gould Belt.

Key words: X-rays: stars – stars: late type – stars: formation – galaxy: stellar content – galaxy: structure

Send offprint requests to: P. Guillout, (guillout@rosat.mpe-garching.mpg.de)

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1998

Online publication: August 6, 1998