Monday, August 25, 2008


The W5 star-forming region courtesy of Spitzer Space Telescope. The oldest stars are the two big blue dots, which lie at the cetre of large voids. Younger stars, pink in the photo, line the edges of these voids. A few stars can be seen forming at the tips of gaseous pillars. The pillars could be locations of Black Holes.

Speaking of simulations, yet another computer model claims to show how stars form in the galactic centre. Astronomers have long wondered how stars could form near the supermassive Black Hole without being torn apart. The new model imagines that the stars formed elsewhere as a cluster, and migrated toward the centre. No evidence supports this model, for one has ever found the trail of stars this would leave. The paper is in the August 22 issue of SCIENCE. In the same issue, another astronomer points out that the simulation does not necessarily correspond to reality.

If a galactic core can contain one Black Hole, it could harbour many more. The Big Bang may have created countless billion of Black Holes in a variety of sizes. If stars formed around them, presence of the singularities would prevent the stars from being torn apart. The immense temperatures and pressures near the Black Hole would provide the trigger to begin nuclear fusion. A Black Hole could exist in the second last place humans would expect, rising in front of our faces each day.

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