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Astronomers find cosmic bodies in new space observations


Sunday, May 14, 2023 10:00 PM

is found Astronomy scientists “objects no one has ever seen before in space”, by examining more than a million images that were collected to create a comprehensive atlas of stars and how they are born, and astronomers used the Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope “VISTA” of the European Southern Observatory (ESO), They collected more than a million images and divided them into a huge mosaic.

According to the “RT” website, the detailed “star atlas” consisting of 5 stellar incubators (the main places where stars are born) less than 1,500 light-years away (a light-year is 9.7 trillion km), shows young stars in the process of formation surrounded by clouds. dense dust.

In addition to creating stunning images, the observations can help scientists solve the mysteries of how stars are born.

Astronomers know that stars form when extremely dense, cold spots collapse into vast clouds of dust and gas under their own gravity. But details such as how many stars the dust cloud can generate, and how many of these stars will host planets, are less clear.

Observations from VISTA can now help astronomers better understand these aspects of star birth, the complex process that leads to early stellar evolution.

“This will allow us to understand the processes that turn gas and dust into stars,” says Stefan Mengast, an astronomer at the University of Vienna in Austria and lead author on the new study.

To better see this process, astronomers used the European Southern Observatory’s telescope to capture the light from within this dust, in infrared light. And by using these infrared wavelengths, scientists can show what is normally hidden from view.

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Over the course of five years, they examined five nearby star-forming regions and collected more than a million images. Then they were glued together into a large mosaic, so that the entire scene could be seen in detail.

Because these regions have been seen many times over a relatively long period, the atlas shows not only the positions of the stars but their motions, and can help astronomers learn how young stars move around them. The data can show how young stars leave their parent clouds and what happens to them as they do so.

It will also serve as the basis for further work, including observations from the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope (ELT), which is now being built.

“The Very Large Telescope will allow us to zoom in on specific regions in unprecedented detail, giving us an unprecedented close-up view of the individual stars currently forming there,” Mengast said.