Star formation is the process by which dense regions within molecular clouds in interstellar space, commonly referred to as "stellar nurseries", collapse into spheres of plasma to form stars. As a branch of astronomy, star formation includes the study of the interstellar medium and giant molecular clouds (GMC) as precursors to the star formation process, and the study of young stellar objects and planet formation as its immediate products. Star formation theory, as well as accounting for the formation of a single star, must also account for the statistics of binary stars and the initial mass function.
Determining when stars first started to form through out the early Universe is a matter of great importance for astronomers and astrophysicists looking to understand how the cosmos evolved from its incipient point of origin. Recently, researchers at MIT who have been studying the most distant quasar observed so far found no discernible trace of heavy [...]
A startling study, which looked at data 10 times more comprehensive compared to previous similar efforts, found that half of all the stars that have ever existed were created between 9 and 11 billion years ago, with the other half created in the years since. What this means is an exponential fall in new stars being [...]
If you think that the recent outbreak of tornadoes are bad, boy are you in for a shocker. An international team of researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics has found that enormous storms of molecular gas are sweeping entire galaxies, destroying everything they come across until they wipe the galaxy clean. Galactic [...]
The nebula you are looking at is known as the North American nebula, and the pictures were taken with the Spitzer telescope, using an infrared vision; researchers still have some unanswered questions about the group of massive stars thought to be dominating the nebula. The lower left of this first image shows the “baby” stars [...]
When early galaxies formed, there was a surprisingly high rate of new stars being formed, which was explained by major galactic collisions; however, recent evidence suggests that in fact the answer is much simpler, and not nearly as violent. Astronomers using the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope in Chile have observed three ancient galaxies [...]