Equality Is A Birthright Among Stars


Star-birth occurs when an especially dense region embedded within a beautiful giant, dark, and frigid molecular cloud collapses under the pull of its own gravity to form baby stars. Such enormous clouds, composed mostly of gas with just a pinch of dust, haunt our barred-spiral Milky Way Galaxy in great numbers, and they serve as stellar nurseries that cradle sparkling newborn stars. The process of nuclear fusion lights the baby star’s stellar fires, and the struggling young protostar must fight for its very existence by balancing two constantly battling forces in order to reach fiery stellar adulthood. Indeed, literally all stars, regardless of their age, must spend their “lives” maintaining a delicate, precarious balance between the push of radiation pressure and the pull of their own gravity. In November 2016, a team of astronomers announced that by using critical observations derived from the Gemini Observatory they had discovered the strongest evidence yet obtained that the birth of the most massive stars in the Cosmos follow a path similar to that of their lower mass kin–but on steroids!

The Gemini Observatory is composed of a duo of 8.19-meter telescopes located in Hawaii and Chile–Gemini North and Gemini South, respectively. The new findings, that include important data from Gemini, SOFIACalar Alto, and the European Southern Observatory (ESO), reveal that the episodic explosive tantrums, known to occur during the birthing of average mass stars like our own Sun, also happen when massive stars are born, as well. The episodic tantrums occur within what are termed accretion disks.

Massive stars, when they reach the unfortunate end of that long stellar road, after having managed to deplete their entire necessary supply of hydrogen fuel in their nuclear-fusing hearts, 바카라사이트 blast themselves to smithereens in the fiery fury of a supernova conflagration–leaving behind a dense neutron star or a stellar mass black hole as a sad souvenir to the Universe that once there had been a star that is a star no more. Smaller stars, like our Sun, die much more gently–peacefully going into that good night by puffing off their shimmering multicolored outer gaseous layers into the space between stars–leaving behind a strange stellar corpse termed a white dwarf. The white dwarf’s shroud consists of the beautiful multicolored gaseous outer layers of the erstwhile star, termed a planetary nebula.

“These outbursts, which are several orders of magnitude larger than their lower mass siblings, can release about as much energy as our Sun delivers in over 100,000 years. Surprisingly, fireworks are observed not just at the end of the lives of massive stars, as supernovae, but also at their birth,” explained Dr. Alessio Caratti o Garatti of the Dublin Institute for Advanced Study in Ireland.

A Star Is Born

Amorphous, billowing, swirling giant molecular clouds haunt the mysterious shadows of the space between stars. Floating silently like ghosts throughout our Galaxy, these “stellar nurseries” contain nests of newborn stars. Within the depths of these cold, dark clouds, baby stars are born, and they light up the relentless and merciless darkness with their brilliant stellar flames and fire.

All stars are born within the secretive folds of these gigantic clouds, when an especially dense blob of mostly hydrogen gas collapses under its own crushing gravity–thus triggering the birth of searing-hot, sparkling protostars. Within the swirling folds of these enormous clouds, fragile threads of star-making material twist and twirl together, and then finally merge–continuing to grow in size for hundreds of thousands of years. The crush of gravity at last becomes a force to be reckoned with when it becomes so powerful that the hydrogen atoms–that are dancing and bobbing around within these dense blobs–dramatically, rapidly fuse. The protostar catches fire, and these roiling stellar flames will rage and churn and flash with glaring brilliance for as long as the star “lives” on the hydrogen-burning main-sequence of the Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram of Stellar Evolution.

 


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