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Advances in Astronomy
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 390287, 25 pages
Review Article

Anomalous Microwave Emission from Star Forming Regions

Physics & Astronomy, University of Southampton, Highfield, Southampton SO17 1BJ, UK

Received 7 June 2012; Accepted 11 January 2013

Academic Editor: Laurent Verstraete

Copyright © 2013 Anna M. M. Scaife. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The evidence for microwave emission from spinning dust grains has been strengthened considerably by its detection in a number of discrete astrophysical objects associated with star formation. These detections, in combination with statistical constraints on its presence on large angular scales in the diffuse ISM, have provided strong observational confirmation of an emission mechanism still referred to as anomalous. This emission has a peaked spectrum with a maximum in the microwave band; the present review discusses the continuum radio emission mechanisms which can contribute to this region of the electromagnetic spectrum, collects published results on the prevalence of anomalous microwave emission in a variety of star formation regions, presents the overall conclusions that may be drawn from the detections so far, and discusses the prospects for future research on the anomalous microwave emission attributed to spinning dust within star forming regions.