Latest Stellar astronomy Stories

Measuring Stellar Gravity
2013-08-23 08:58:22

[ Watch The Video: Star Flickering Discovery ] John P. Millis, PhD for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A star’s gravitational strength is key in understanding and modeling other properties of a particular star, to say nothing of understanding the planets that orbit around it. But making accurate measurements of a star’s surface gravity is difficult, and measurements are often only good to within about a 50% estimation of the actual value, sometimes worse. Now, however,...

Zombie-Like Vortex Gives Final Push To Birth New Star
2013-08-21 14:06:17

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online For years, most astronomers have agreed on the basic steps that lead to star formation, except one – how a cloud of swirling gas can slow down enough to concentrate into something capable of nuclear fusion. A new study from the University of California, Berkeley has found evidence of “zombie vortices” within a gestating star leading to a final push that gives birth to a new star. According to prevailing theories, stars begin...

ALMA Pics Dramatic Star Birth
2013-08-20 09:15:05

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers say they have obtained a close-up view of material streaming away from a newborn star. Using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) telescope, a team of scientists was able to discover the jets coming off an object called Herbig-Haro 46/47 are even more energetic than previously believed. The new images also reveal a previously unknown jet pointing in an entirely different direction. The new images reveal...

Cosmic Turbulence Black Hole Formation
2013-08-16 09:31:01

John P. Millis, PhD for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The mechanism by which stars and black holes are formed in extreme cases of high mass density has puzzled astronomers since Johannes Kepler first laid out his laws of planetary motion some 400 years ago. In the most basic sense, a large cloud of gas condenses into a rotating disk. Mass is then directed towards the center of the cloud where, due to the increasing density, a stellar body is eventually formed. One challenge to...

How Fast Does A Supernova Shockwave Travel? A Japan Team May Have The Answer
2013-08-13 14:51:55

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Some of the most spectacular explosions this side of the Big Bang, supernovae generate unthinkable amounts of force and energy and new research from Keio University in Japan has measured the expansion velocity of a supernova shockwave for the first time. The shockwave measured by the research team was from the supernova remnant W44, which is located approximately 10,000 light years from Earth. Quantifying the expansion and kinetic...

Heavy Metal Stars
2013-08-01 14:00:20

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers from the Armagh Observatory in Northern Ireland say they have discovered two unusual, heavy metal stars. The team wrote in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society that they found the stars HE 2359-2844 and HE 1256-2738 to contain extremely high concentrations of lead in their atmospheres. Naslim Neelamkodan, Simon Jeffery, Natalie Behara and Alan Hibbert said these two stars have surfaces containing...

The Largest Magnetic Fields In The Universe
2013-07-29 04:11:34

John P. Millis, Ph.D. for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) are thought to be the most powerful, energetic events in the Universe. They can release as much energy in one second as an entire galaxy expels in an entire year. But while astronomers have some solid theories on what drives these events, many of the details are still widely debated. One of the complicating matters comes from the fact GRBs appear to fall into two separate classes: long and short burst...

Generation Gap In Stars' Orbital Dance
2013-07-19 05:52:28

[ Watch the Video: Zoom into 47 Tucanae ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope are tracking the orbital motion of 33,000 stars in one of the Milky Way's oldest globular clusters. The team will be using the space observatory to track the orbital motion of 33,000 stars within globular cluster 47 Tucanae, which sits over 16,000 light-years away from Earth. "When analyzing the motions of stars, the longer the time baseline...

Monstrous Stellar Collisions Not Expected To Occur Anytime Soon
2013-07-11 14:32:31

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astrophysicists from the Astronomical Observatory of the Faculty of Physics at the University of Warsaw say the next collision of monstrous stars will not occur until billions of years from now. Three years ago, scientists discovered that the Magellanic Clouds host gigantic stars with between 200 and 300 times the solar mass  of our own Sun. Before then, astronomers believed that the biggest stars in the Universe did not...

NASA SOFIA Images Massive Star Cluster
2013-07-10 12:37:44

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online NASA astronomers have taken new images of a recently born star cluster sitting in the W3 region about 6,400 light years away from Earth. The new star cluster, named W3A, is seen in the images floating in the depths of the large gas and dust cloud from which it formed. A close-up image taken by NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) shows the violent interaction zone around the massive star cluster. The...

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Stellar Astrophysics
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The prominent feature that allows for the existence of life on Earth is the Sun. Radiation from our closest star provides heat and energy to our planet, driving biological processes and providing the necessary conditions for liquid water to naturally exist. But our Sun is only but one star in this vast Universe. And as it turns out, most stars are quite different than the one that illuminates our day. For this reason, scientists have, for hundreds of years, attempted to study the other...

2004-10-19 04:45:43

Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram -- In stellar astronomy, the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram (H-R diagram) shows the relation between the absolute magnitude and the spectral types of stars. It was invented around 1910 by Ejnar Hertzsprung and Henry Norris Russell. There are two equivalent forms. One is the observer's form which plots the color of the star on one axis and the absolute magnitude on the other axis. The theoretician's form plots the temperature of the star on one axis and the...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Stellar Evolution -- Stellar evolution is the process of formation, life, and death of stars. It is one of the major topics of cosmogony. Star Birth and Life A star starts out as an enormous cloud of gas and dust many light-years across. Star formation begins when the cloud begins to condense under its own gravity. The processes that initiate this contraction are not fully understood. The cloud fragments fuse into stellar mass clouds known as protostars. Protostars do not emit...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Star Formation -- Star formation is the process by which gas in molecular clouds gets transformed into stars. In the current paradigm of star formation, cores of molecular clouds (regions of specially high density) became gravitationally unstable, and start to concentrate. Part of the gravitational energy lost in the process is radiated in the infrared, another part increases the temperature of the core. The accretion of material happen partially though a circumstellar disc. When...

2004-10-19 04:45:42

Star Designation -- The International Astronomical Union (IAU) is the internationally recognised authority for assigning designations to stars (and other celestial bodies). Many of the star names in use today were inherited from the time before the IAU existed. Other names, mainly for variable stars (including novae and supernovae), are being added all the time. Most stars, however, have no name and are referred to, if at all, by means of catalogue numbers. This article briefly...

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Word of the Day
  • Scandinavian punch made of claret and aquavit with spices and raisins and orange peel and sugar.
This word comes from the Swedish 'glogg,' which is an alteration of 'glodgat,' mulled (wine).