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pf3147_binary_h

May 1, 2012
This computer simulated image shows the formation of two high-density regions (yellow) in the early universe, approximately 200 million years after the big bang. The cores are separated by about 800 times the distance between the Earth and the sun and are expected to evolve into a binary--or twin--star system. The simulations were created by astrophysicists Matthew Turk and Tom Abel of the Kavli Institute for Particle Astrophysics and Cosmology at the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, and Brian O'Shea of Michigan State University. "We used to think that these stars formed by themselves, but now we see from our computer simulations that sometimes they have siblings," said Turk. "These stars provide the seeds of next-generation star formation so by understanding them, we can better understand how other stars and galaxies formed." Credit: Visualization by Ralf Kaehler, Matthew Tuk and Tom Abel; Science magazine, Matthew Turk, Tom Abel and Brian O'Shea


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