Deconvolution of images from blast 2005: Insight into the K3-50 and IC 5146 star-forming regions

Arabindo Roy, Peter A.R. Ade, James J. Bock, Christopher M. Brunt, Edward L. Chapin, Mark J. Devlin, Simon R. Dicker, Kevin France, Andrew G. Gibb, Matthew Griffin, Joshua O. Gundersen, Mark Halpern, Peter C. Hargrave, David H. Hughes, Jeff Klein, Gaelen Marsden, Peter G. Martin, Philip Mauskopf, Calvin B. Netterfield, Luca OlmiGuillaume Patanchon, Marie Rex, Douglas Scott, Christopher Semisch, Matthew D.P. Truch, Carole Tucker, Gregory S. Tucker, Marco P. Viero, Donald V. Wiebe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


We present an implementation of the iterative flux-conserving Lucy-Richardson (L-R) deconvolution method of image restoration for maps produced by the Balloon-borne Large Aperture Submillimeter Telescope (BLAST). Compared to the direct Fourier transform method of deconvolution, the L-R operation restores images with better-controlled background noise and increases source detectability. Intermediate iterated images are useful for studying extended diffuse structures, while the later iterations truly enhance point sources to near the designed diffraction limit of the telescope. The L-R method of deconvolution is efficient in resolving compact sources in crowded regions while simultaneously conserving their respective flux densities. We have analyzed its performance and convergence extensively through simulations and cross-correlations of the deconvolved images with available high-resolution maps. We present new science results from two BLAST surveys, in the Galactic regions K3-50 and IC 5146, further demonstrating the benefits of performing this deconvolution. We have resolved three clumps within a radius of 45 inside the star-forming molecular cloud containing K3-50. Combining the well-resolved dust emission map with available multi-wavelength data, we have constrained the spectral energy distributions (SEDs) of five clumps to obtain masses (M), bolometric luminosities (L), and dust temperatures (T). The L-M diagram has been used as a diagnostic tool to estimate the evolutionary stages of the clumps. There are close relationships between dust continuum emission and both 21 cm radio continuum and 12CO molecular line emission. The restored extended large-scale structures in the Northern Streamer of IC 5146 have a strong spatial correlation with both SCUBA and high-resolution extinction images. A dust temperature of 12 K has been obtained for the central filament. We report physical properties of ten compact sources, including six associated protostars, by fitting SEDs to multi-wavelength data. All of these compact sources are still quite cold (typical temperature below 16 K) and are above the critical Bonner-Ebert mass. They have associated low-power young stellar objects. Further evidence for starless clumps has also been found in the IC 5146 region.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number142
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • stars: formation
  • submillimeter: general
  • techniques: image processing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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