Star formation is inefficient. Only a fewper cent of the available gas in molecular clouds forms stars, leading to the observed low star formation rate (SFR). The same holds when averaged over many molecular clouds, such that the SFR of whole galaxies is again surprisingly low. Indeed, considering the low temperatures, molecular clouds should be highly gravitationally unstable and collapse on their global mean freefall time-scale. And yet, they are observed to live about 10-100 times longer,...[Show more]
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