AG Carinae, whose mass is up to 70 times greater than that of the Sun, lives a tug of war between gravity and radiation that can cause it to self-destruct 23/04/2021 Share on Facebook Tweet on Twitter tweet AG Carinae: internal dispute between radiation and gravity.
Credit: NASA, ESA and STSCi; CC BY 4.0 In commemoration of the 31st anniversary of NASA/ESAs Hubble Space Telescope launch, astronomers pointed the observatory to one of the brightest stars seen in our galaxy to capture its beauty.
The giant star AG Carinae, presented above, lives a tug of war between gravity and radiation that can cause it to self-destruct.
Is it surrounded by an expanding layer of gas and dust? a nebula.
The nebula is about five light-years wide, which is equal to the distance from here to the nearest star of us, Alpha Centauri.
Spitzer reveals wind effects originating from giant star Saltwater vapor envelopes giant baby stars.
The huge structure was created from one or more giant eruptions several thousand years ago.
The outer layers of the star were cast into space; the expelled material totals about 10 times the mass of our Sun.
These explosions are typical of the life of a rare type of star called Luminous Blue Variable (LBV).
This is a brief and unstable phase in the short life of an ultra-bright and glamorous star that lives quickly and dies young.
Short life expectancy These stars are among the most massive and bright known.
They live for only a few million years, compared to the life of approximately 10 billion years of our Sun.
AG Carinae is a few million years old and resides 20,000 light years from our galaxy, the Milky Way.
The life expectancy of the star is between 5 million and 6 million years.
LBVs have a dual personality.
Do they seem to spend years in ecstasy in general quiet and suddenly live an explosion, during which their luminosity increases? sometimes in several orders of magnitude.
These giants are very different from normal stars like the Sun.
AG Carinae is estimated to be up to 70 times more mass than the Sun and shines with the blinding glow of 1 million Suns.
Important explosions, such as the one that produced the nebula presented in this image, occur sometimes during the life of an LBV.
This kind of star only throws material when its in danger of self-destruct.
Because of its massive forms and overheated temperatures, variable stars?? Luminous blues like AG Carinae are in a constant battle to maintain stability.
Rare stars an arm fall between the radiation pressure from inside the star pushing outward and gravity pressing inward.
This dispute results in the expansion and contraction of the star.
External pressure occasionally wins the battle, and the star expands to such an immense size that it explodes its outer layers, like an erupting volcano.
But this explosion only happens when the star is about to disintegrate.
After the star ejects the material, it contracts to its normal size (large), accommodates and becomes stable again.
LBV stars are rare: less than 50 are known among galaxies in our local group of neighboring galaxies.
These stars spend tens of thousands of years in this phase, a blink of an eye in cosmic time.
Is it expected that some end their lives in explosions of titanic supernovas, which enrich the universe with heavier elements?? in addition to iron.
Like many other LBVs, AG Carinae remains unstable.
She experienced minor explosions that were not as powerful as the one that created the present nebula.
Although AG Carinae is calm now, its scorching radiation and powerful stellar wind (charged particle flows) have shaped the old nebula, carving intricate structures while the leaking gas reaches the slow-moving external nebula.
The wind is traveling at up to 1 million kilometers per hour, about 10 times faster than the expanding nebula.
Over time, the hot wind reaches the coolest expelled material, penetrates into it and pushes it away from the star.
That effect? limpaneve mean? responds through the cavity around the star.
Hydrogen and nitrogen The red material is brilliant hydrogen gas mixed with nitrogen gas.
The diffuse red material in the upper left corner points to where the wind broke through a thin region of material and swept it into space.
The most prominent features, highlighted in blue, are filamentary structures in the form of tadpoles and crooked bubbles.
These structures are clusters of dust illuminated by star light.
The tadpole shaped features, more prominent on the left and bottom, are denser dust clusters that have been carved by the stellar wind.
The crisp view of the Hubble reveals these delicately looking structures in great detail.
The image was taken in visible and ultraviolet light.
Hubble is ideal for observations in ultraviolet light because this wavelength range can only be seen from space.
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