Latest White dwarf Stories

Double Star System Detected Using New South African Radio Telescope
2013-05-16 13:22:20

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers using the Karoo Array Telescope (KAT-7) in South Africa have revealed giant outbursts from X-ray binary star system Circinus X-1. The team watched as the double star system fired off energetic matter from its core into the surrounding system in extensive, compact jets that flared brightly. Circinus X-1 is a neutron star system where the two stars orbit each other every 16.5 days in an elliptical orbit. When the two...

Cosmic Test Upholds Einstein's Theory Of General Relativity
2013-04-25 13:56:53

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers have found a way to test Einstein's theory of gravity in ways that were not possible before now, thanks to new observations of a very unique system. A team used telescopes around the world to study the most massive neutron star confirmed so far, orbited by a white dwarf. The scientists wrote in the journal Science that so far the new observations match up with Einstein's predictions for general relativity....

White Dwarf Search May Yield Habitable Planets
2013-04-25 05:25:40

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A dead star, known as a white dwarf, will eventually cool down and fade away because it has no energy source. A new study led by Professor Dan Maoz of Tel Aviv University's School of Physics and Astronomy suggests that white dwarfs can still support habitable planets. The team, which includes Prof. Avi Loeb, Director of Harvard University's Institute for Theory and Computation and a Sackler Professor by Special Appointment at TAU,...

Kepler's Supernova Contains Higher Heavy Metal Content Than Our Sun
2013-04-09 14:22:13

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Using observations made from the Suzaku satellite, a joint venture between Japan's space agency and NASA, an international team of researchers has found that the star responsible for Johannes Kepler´s famous supernova contained a much higher heavy metal content that our own sun. After determining the makeup of the distant star, the scientists said they have a greater understanding of Ia supernovae, a useful class of stellar...

Kepler Data Shows Light-bending Gravity In Action
2013-04-05 08:44:27

[ Watch the Video: Dead Star Warps Light of Red Star ] redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online NASA's Kepler space telescope has observed the effects of a dead star bending the light of its companion star, one of the first detections of this phenomenon in double star systems. The dead star, known as a white dwarf, is the burnt-out core of what used to be a star much like our sun. It is locked in an orbiting pattern with its partner, a small "red dwarf" star, which is...

Astronomers Identify New Type Of Supernova 100 Times More Massive Than Our Sun
2013-03-26 13:30:57

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers discovered a new type of supernova of a star about 10 to 100 times more massive than our sun. The Type Iax supernova is a fainter and less energetic explosion than the Type Ia, and may not completely destroy the white dwarf star; type Ia supernovae completely destroy their tiny white dwarfs. "A Type Iax supernova is essentially a mini supernova," says lead author Ryan Foley, Clay Fellow at the Harvard-Smithsonian...

Kepler Supernova Remnant Triggers Identified
2013-03-19 04:33:38

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has identified the cause of Kepler's supernova, the famous explosion first discovered by Johannes Kepler in 1604. The image above shows low (red), intermediate (green) and high (blue) energy X-rays with a star field background from the Digitized Sky Survey. It is already known that the supernova is a Type Ia, which is the thermonuclear explosion of a white dwarf star. Type Ia's are important cosmic...

Little Room Left For Error In Foundations Of Carbon-Based Life
2013-03-14 12:57:03

North Carolina State University Life as we know it is based upon the elements of carbon and oxygen. Now a team of physicists, including one from North Carolina State University, is looking at the conditions necessary to the formation of those two elements in the universe. They´ve found that when it comes to supporting life, the universe leaves very little margin for error. Both carbon and oxygen are produced when helium burns inside of giant red stars. Carbon-12, an essential...

Rare Supernova Discovered In Distant Galaxy
2013-03-07 17:47:11

John P. Millis, PhD for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers have long been aware of supernovae — brilliant explosions ejecting massive amounts of gas and energy into the surrounding medium. But occasionally one of them is different, set apart, unlike anything we have seen before. Researchers with the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA) have announced in a new paper that one such event has been discovered. Supernovae are split into sub-types....

Latest White dwarf Reference Libraries

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...

More Articles (4 articles) »
Word of the Day
  • A blustering, bullying fellow; a pot-valiant braggart; a bully.
This word is named for Draw-Can-Sir, a character in George Villiers' 17th century play The Rehearsal.