Birth of Stars and Planets. Lesson Essential Question. How did gravity lead to the formation of the solar system?. Gravity. What is it? Gravity is the attractive force that exists between any two objects which is dependent upon the masses of the objects and the distances between them.
That is a basic explanation of how the solar system formed. We need more proof though. We will try to prove this using images from Hubble. Let’s see some!
Question 1: How would gravity act on the gaseous pillars in image 1? Would it cause them to grow larger by expanding, or would it cause them to grow smaller by contracting? Justify your answer.
Question 2: Think about the answer to question 1. If gravity does influence the gaseous pillars and the gas clouds, which of the two images (1 or 2) probably represents the earlier stage of the formation of stars and planets?