We present multiwavelength linear polarimetric observations of 104 stars towards the region of young open cluster NGC 6823. The polarization towards NGC 6823 is dominated by foreground dust grains and we found evidence for the presence of several layers of dust towards the line of sight. The first layer of dust is approximately located within 200 pc towards the cluster, which is much closer to the Sun than the cluster itself (∼2.1 kpc). The radial distribution of the position angles for the member stars is found to show a systematic change, while the polarization is found to reduce towards the outer parts of the cluster and the average position angle of the coronal region of the cluster is very close to the inclination of the Galactic parallel (∼32°). The size distribution of the grains within NGC 6823 is similar to those in the general interstellar medium. The patchy distribution of foreground dust grains is suggested to be mainly responsible for both differential reddening and polarization towards NGC 6823. The majority of the observed stars do not show evidence of intrinsic polarization in their light.
Keywords: polarization; dust, extinction; open clusters and associations: individual: NGC 6823
Journal Article. 8959 words. Illustrated.
Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics
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