Latest White dwarf Stories

2008-07-18 09:05:00

XMM-Newton has discovered an exploding star in the Milky Way. Usually that would be important in itself, but this time there is a special twist. Calculations show that the explosion must have been clearly visible to the unaided eye but was missed by the legions of star watchers around the planet.

2008-07-11 15:00:09

Almost two months ago my newborn son began his life just as stars go through a life cycle of their own. Stars are formed from within a nebula, a cloud of gas and dust.

2008-07-10 08:00:00

Imagine having three clocks in your house, each chiming at a different time. Astronomers have found the equivalent of three out-of-sync "clocks" in the ancient open star cluster NGC 6791.

2008-06-03 10:20:00

A team of stellar astronomers is engaged in an interstellar CSI (crime scene investigation). They have two suspects, traces of assault and battery, but no corpse.

2008-05-01 12:29:26

Discovery helps solve riddle of where the carbon white dwarfs come from, and what happens to their hydrogen and helium

2008-04-01 11:05:00

Scientists working at the Dublin Institute for Advanced Studies have found a clutch of jets from newborn brown dwarfs.

2008-03-26 17:10:00

Starting Wednesday, March 26, Provencal--who is an assistant professor of physics and astronomy at the University of Delaware, director of the Delaware Asteroseismic Research Center (DARC), and resident astronomer at Mt. Cuba Astronomical Observatory in Greenville, Del.--will be coordinating some of the world's largest telescopes in a three-week-long “international observing run,” focusing on a white dwarf known as IU Vir in the constellation Virgo. The star's coordinates are...

2008-02-13 13:20:00

Using data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory, scientists have reported the possible detection of a binary star system that was later destroyed in a supernova explosion.

2008-01-29 13:50:00

A strange and violent fate awaits a white dwarf star that wanders too close to a moderately massive black hole. According to a new study, the black hole's gravitational pull on the white dwarf would cause tidal forces sufficient to disrupt the stellar remnant and reignite nuclear burning in it, giving rise to a supernova explosion with an unusual appearance. Observations of such supernovae could confirm the existence of intermediate-mass black holes, currently the subject of much debate among...

Latest White dwarf Reference Libraries

White Dwarf
2004-10-19 04:45:43

White Dwarf -- A white dwarf is a a star supported by electron degeneracy. A star like our Sun will become a white dwarf when it has exhausted its nuclear fuel. Near the end of its nuclear burning stage, such a star goes through a red giant phase and then expels most of its outer material (creating a planetary nebula) until only the hot (T > 100,000 K) core remains, which then settles down to become a young white dwarf. A typical white dwarf is half as massive as the Sun, yet only...

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

Nova -- A nova is an enormous nuclear explosion caused by the accretion of hydrogen onto the surface of a white dwarf star. When a white dwarf has a close companion star, the companion will often begin to have its outer atmosphere drawn away from it by the white dwarf's gravity as the companion star ages and expands into a red giant. The gases so captured consist primarily of hydrogen and helium, the two principle constituents of matter in the universe. The gases are compacted on the...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Cataclysmic Variable Star -- Cataclysmic variables are a class of binary stars containing a white dwarf and a companion star. The companion star is usually a red dwarf, although in some cases it is another white dwarf or a slightly evolved star (subgiant). Several hundreds of cataclysmic variables are known. From the observational viewpoint, cataclysmic variables are relatively easy to discover. They are usually quite blue objects, as the majority of stars are red. The variability of...

2004-10-19 04:45:40

Sirius -- Sirius (α Canis Major, also known as the Dog Star) is the brightest star (-1.46m) in the night sky and can be seen from every inhabited region of the Earth's surface. At a distance of 8.6 light years, Sirius is also one of the nearest stars to Earth. It is a main sequence star of spectral type A0 or A1 and has a mass about 2.4 times that of the Sun. Sirius has a white dwarf companion called Sirius B which orbits it with a period close to 50 years. It was the first white...

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Word of the Day
  • A person who stands up for something, as contrasted to a bystander who remains inactive.
  • One of the upright handlebars on a traditional Inuit sled.
The word 'upstander' in the first sense here is a play on the word 'bystander' and the idea of 'standing up' for something.