APR 08, 2017 8:07 AM PDT

Explosion From Two Young Colliding Stars Discovered

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

Half of a millennium ago, two young stars (dubbed protostars) located in the in the Orion constellation were gravitationally attracted to one another and eventually slammed into one another, either by side-swiping each other or by colliding head-on. 

The event caused a massive explosion in the Orion Molecular Cloud 1 (OMC-1) approximately 1,350 light years away from Earth, and it was observed by astronomers via the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Northern Chile.

An explosion in the Orion Constellation that was caused by the collision of two protostars.

Image Credit: ALMA (ESO/NAOJ/NRAO), J. Bally/H. Drass et al.

Published in The Astrophysical Journal, a paper describing the event notes how the explosion exhibited the same amount of energy intensity of our Sun over the course of 10 million years. The event was also described as exhibiting colorful “streamers” ejecting from the source of the collision.

The power from the explosion was so great that it sent debris and other protostars in the star-forming OMC-1 region into all directions at speeds of nearly 93 miles per second.

Related: Hubble spies on a spectacular star explosion

The light given off by the explosive event is seen in the high-resolution images in different colors. The researchers indicate that the bluer light comes from gasses traveling more quickly, while the redder light comes from gasses traveling more slowly.

While stellar explosions are normally seen at the end of a star’s life cycle in the form of supernovae, this is an interesting exception because it’s quite the opposite. These were young stars at just the beginning of their life cycle when the collision occurred and produced this incredibly bright cosmic explosion.

For what it’s worth, remnants from these kinds of explosions only last a few centuries. That said, being that it’s already 500 years old, astronomers might only have a few more centuries longer to observe it before most trace evidence is gone. Observing it can help us learn more about the physics of colliding stars, especially at a young age.

Source: Gizmodo

About the Author
  • Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
JUL 22, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Telescope Riding a Balloon Could Replace Hubble
JUL 22, 2021
Telescope Riding a Balloon Could Replace Hubble
The Earth's atmosphere often muffles views from ground-based telescopes when observing space. Now, a research c ...
SEP 03, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Virgin Galactic's Core Spaceship is Grounded by the FAA
SEP 03, 2021
Virgin Galactic's Core Spaceship is Grounded by the FAA
Two billionaires took their ambitions to space this summer. It seems one has now been temporarily grounded. The US Feder ...
SEP 14, 2021
Space & Astronomy
NASA is Planning to Shoot a Spacecraft Into an Asteroid
SEP 14, 2021
NASA is Planning to Shoot a Spacecraft Into an Asteroid
NASA can detect asteroids, so there's been plenty of speculation about what might happen if we discover an asteroid ...
DEC 08, 2021
Space & Astronomy
This Scorching Hot Planet Orbits Its Star in Eight Hours
DEC 08, 2021
This Scorching Hot Planet Orbits Its Star in Eight Hours
Scientists discovered an exoplanet that has some wild characteristics. This exoplanet, called GJ 367b, was identified by ...
DEC 28, 2021
Space & Astronomy
Apollo 17 Moon Samples Illuminates Moon's Evolution
DEC 28, 2021
Apollo 17 Moon Samples Illuminates Moon's Evolution
The Apollo Moon missions not only succeeded in landing the first humans on the surface of our nearest planetary neighbor ...
JAN 10, 2022
Space & Astronomy
Jupiter Moons Anniversary: Five Additional Observations of Galileo Galilei
JAN 10, 2022
Jupiter Moons Anniversary: Five Additional Observations of Galileo Galilei
January 10, 1610 is a historic day in science, as it was the day that Galileo Galilei noted one of Jupiter’s moons ...
Loading Comments...