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    We perform simulations of star cluster formation to investigate the morphological evolution of embedded star clusters in the earliest stages of their evolution. We conduct our simulations with Torch, which uses the Amuse framework to couple state-of-the-art stellar dynamics to star formation, radiation, stellar winds, and hydrodynamics in Flash. We simulate a suite of 104 M⊙ clouds at 0.0683 pc resolution for ∼2 Myr after the onset of star formation, with virial parameters α = 0.8, 2.0, 4.0 and different random samplings of the stellar initial mass function and prescriptions for primordial binaries. Our simulations result in a population of embedded clusters with realistic morphologies (sizes, densities, and ellipticities) that reproduce the known trend of clouds with higher initial α having lower star formation efficiencies. Our key results are as follows: (1) Cluster mass growth is not monotonic, and clusters can lose up to half of their mass while they are embedded. (2) Cluster morphology is not correlated with cluster mass and changes over ∼0.01 Myr time-scales. (3) The morphology of an embedded cluster is not indicative of its long-term evolution but only of its recent history: radius and ellipticity increase sharply when a cluster accretes stars. (4) The dynamical evolution of verymore »young embedded clusters with masses ≲1000 M⊙ is dominated by the overall gravitational potential of the star-forming region rather than by internal dynamical processes such as two- or few-body relaxation.

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  2. null (Ed.)
    ABSTRACT The fraction of stars in binary systems within star clusters is important for their evolution, but what proportion of binaries form by dynamical processes after initial stellar accretion remains unknown. In previous work, we showed that dynamical interactions alone produced too few low-mass binaries compared to observations. We therefore implement an initial population of binaries in the coupled magnetohydrodynamics and direct N-body star cluster formation code torch. We compare simulations with, and without, initial binary populations and follow the dynamical evolution of the binary population in both sets of simulations, finding that both dynamical formation and destruction of binaries take place. Even in the first few million years of star formation, we find that an initial population of binaries is needed at all masses to reproduce observed binary fractions for binaries with mass ratios above the q ≥ 0.1 detection limit. Our simulations also indicate that dynamical interactions in the presence of gas during cluster formation modify the initial distributions towards binaries with smaller primary masses, larger mass ratios, smaller semimajor axes and larger eccentricities. Systems formed dynamically do not have the same properties as the initial systems, and systems formed dynamically in the presence of an initial populationmore »of binaries differ from those formed in simulations with single stars only. Dynamical interactions during the earliest stages of star cluster formation are important for determining the properties of binary star systems.« less