Astronomers are getting front seats to a star being born

Astronomers got a rare chance watching a star born.

They claimed that they’ve caught the star in the throes of its dramatic evolution and were able to compare images taken 18 years ago. That star is named W75N(B)-VLA 2, which is about eight times more huge than the sun.

It was on 1996 when a cloud in the star-forming region labeled W75N(B) was first detected using radio telescopes, a cloud with very little structure, a magnetic field that wasn’t oriented in any particular direction, and a solar wind streaming away in all directions.

In journal Science, astronomers reported observations last year showed the stellar winds had begun to align with the object’s poles and its magnetic field was now aligned with the field of the larger surrounding cloud of dust and gas.

They noticed visible milestones of its development. For this, CarlosCarrasco-Gonzalez of the Center of Radioastronomy and Astrophysics at the National Autonomous University of Mexico said “The comparison is remarkable. We’re seeing this dramatic change in real time, so this object is providing us an exciting opportunity to watch over the next few years as a very young star goes through the early stages of its formation.”

The astronomers have been studying the developing star with the National Science Foundation’s Very Large Array radio telescope.

The scientists believe the young star is forming in a dense, and is surrounded by a doughnut-shaped, dusty torus. The wind slows as it strikes the dusty torus. Then, along the poles of the torus  wind can be seen expanding outward, resulting in the elongated shape of the outflow – as seen in the recent observations of W75N(B)-VLA 2.

Carrasco-Gonzalez, who leads the research said that they’ve seen exactly what they predicted in the period of 18 years. Since, the star’s behavior resembled the theoretical models, which predicted a spherical expansion of gas outflows in the first few thousand years of a massive star’s life.

Carrasco-Gonzalez worked with international collaborators from Mexico, Sweden, the Netherlands, Spain, Japanand Korea.

“Our understanding of how massive young stars develop is much less complete than our understanding of howSun-like stars develop,” Carrasco-Gonzalez says. “It’s going to be really great to be able to watch one as it changes. We expect to learn a lot from this object.”




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