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Introduction

Introduction

Stars are born from a large collection of dusts and gasses that compress under the pressure of gravity, and eventually these dusts and gasses clump in to balls. Once these balls get big enough, they will be able to burn hydrogen and helium. This is known as a protostar. Whenever you see a red dot in a nebula, you will know that is a protostar.


Stellar nurseries
Stellar Nurseries

  • But where would you find enough gas and dust in space? Gas and dust does not simply appear. And gas and dust that just lies around in space would not be able to create stars up to 100,000 times the mass of our own sun. So stars are formed in what are called Stellar Nurseries. Stellar Nurseries are massive collections of dust and gas (mainly hydrogen gas). The majority of new stars are born in these nurseries.


Nebulas
nebulas

  • Although these nurseries are quite large, it gets bigger. Believe it or not, these massive clouds of dust are inside even more massive clouds of dust called nebulas. Nebulas are made of the same material as stellar nurseries, but just in more massive amounts. Our solar system is not in a nebula however. We live in what is called the “Local Bubble.” Our closest nebula is the Orion Nebula. The Orion nebula is about 1,500 light years away, six light years across, and you can see it as the second point of light in the hunter’s sword.



The eagle nebula
The eagle nebula

  • An example of a nebula is the eagle nebula. The Eagle Nebula is home to the Pillars of Creation, the famous image of three purple pillars of gas and dust in space. These pillars are illuminated by massive stars that they created. They go through constant change. If they are being sculpted, destroyed or illuminated, the result, whatever it may be, it a result of the NGC 6611 star cluster.



Dr21 nursery
DR21 nursery

  • An example of a stellar nursery is the DR21 Stellar Nursery. In nurseries like this, the dust clouds are so dense that visible light from the stars I created cannot escape. These stars have to be seen through infrared wavelengths that the Spitzer telescope detects. This nursery is 10,000 light years away, and can be seen in the constellation Cygnus. In this Nursery, there are red filaments that contain organic compounds. These organic compounds are called “Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons”, or PAH’s



Pah s
PAH’s

  • PAH’s are a collection of hundreds of chemicals that form from incomplete burning of coal, oil, gas, garbage or organic substances, and contain about 100 carbon atoms and about 10,000 compounds. These PAH’s are everywhere in space, and found on almost every object in space. Astronomers have discovered that PAH’s create silicon dust clouds Which create Earth like planets. PAH’s can show dust structure and map star formation.



Works sited
Works sited

  • http://www.eso.org/public/news/eso0142/

  • http://map.gsfc.nasa.gov/universe/rel_stars.html

  • http://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/imagegallery/image_feature_643.html

  • http://www.nasa.gov/vision/universe/starsgalaxies/spitzer-041304.html

  • http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/toxfaqs/tf.asp?id=121&tid=25

  • http://legacy.spitzer.caltech.edu/features/articles/20050627.shtml

  • http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-a-stellar-nursery.htm


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