According to a new, first-kind survey, stellar nurseries, where stars are forged gas and dust cauldrons, are far more diverse than astronomers initially thought.
Astronomers from the High Angle Resolution Physics (PHANGS) project of nearby galaxies systematically illustrated more than 100,000 nurseries across 90 galaxies, discovering that each is far more unique than originally thought. Did.
It can take tens of millions of years for a star to form. It grows from a swirling cloud of turbulent dust and gas into a gently shining protostar, eventually becoming a giant sphere of plasma powered by sun-like fusion. However, how quickly this process depletes the nursery’s gas and dust storage, and how many stars can then form in a given location, depends on the location of the stellar nursery in the galaxy.
“I used to think that every stellar nursery in every galaxy should look about the same, but this is not the case in this study, and stellar nurseries vary from place to place,” said the lead author. Associate Professor Adam Leroy said. Ohio State University Astronomy, Said in a statement.. “These nurseries are responsible for the construction of galaxies and the creation of planets, and are only an important part of the story of how we got here.”
A five-year study conducted across a section of the universe known as the nearby universe because of its proximity to our galaxy used the Atacama Large Millimeter / Submillimeter Wave Array (ALMA) radio telescope in Chile. .. Atacama Desert..By conducting their survey in wireless Part of Electromagnetic spectrumAstronomers, not the optics, were able to focus on the faint glow of dark and dense molecular cloud dust and gas, as opposed to the visible light from the young stars they created. ..
This allowed researchers to study how the star home cloud shapes its formation.
“To understand how stars are formed, we need to link the birth of a single star to that location in the universe. It links people to their homes, neighborhoods, cities, regions. When a galaxy represents a city, the neighborhood is the spiral arm, the home of the star-forming unit, and the nearby galaxy is the neighboring city of the region, “said Max Planck Institute for Astronomy. Astronomer Eva Sinnerer of PHANGS said in a statement. “These observations have taught us that the’neighborhood’has a small but significant effect on where and how many stars are born. “
They found that the method of forging a star depends on whether the molecular cloud that makes it is in the galactic disk, the bar of the star, the spiral arm, or the galactic center.
“Clouds in the dense central region of the galaxy tend to be denser and more turbulent than the clouds in the quiet suburbs of the galaxy,” said L’Institut de Recherche en Astrophysiqueet astronomer. Author Annie Hughes states. Planétologie. “The life cycle of clouds also depends on the environment. Both the speed at which clouds form stars and the process of ultimately destroying them seem to depend on where they live.”
The team then tries to understand what this change means for the formation of stars and planets, and for our own place in the universe.
In a statement, Leroy said, “This is the first time we have a clear picture of the population of stellar nurseries throughout the nearby universe. In that sense, it’s a big step towards understanding where we came from. “. “We know that stellar nurseries vary from place to place, but we still don’t know why or how these changes affect the stars and planets that form. These are questions I’d like to answer in the near future.”
Researchers presented the findings at the American Astronomical Society’s online summer conference on Tuesday (June 8) and published the findings on a preprint server on April 15. arXivTherefore, the study has not yet been peer-reviewed.
Originally published in Live Science.
100,000 star nurseries mapped in first-of-its-kind survey Source link 100,000 star nurseries mapped in first-of-its-kind survey