The far-infrared polarization of the Orion nebula

D. P. Gonatas, G. A. Engargiola, R. H. Hildebrand, S. R. Platt, X. D. Wu, J. A. Davidson, G. Novak, D. K. Aitken, C. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Citations (Scopus)


Polarization of the 100 micron thermal emission from 10 points in the Orion nebula has been measured. At one of the positions the degree, 5.7 percent, is the largest far-infrared polarization yet discovered. Except at a position in the barlike structure to the south, the position angles of the polarization vectors are well-ordered, suggesting that a uniform magnetic field threads the cloud. The magnetic field strength is estimated to be between 0.7 and 4 mG. The relationship of the degrees of polarization to the physical conditions in the cloud is discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-137
JournalThe Astrophysical Journal
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 1990


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