Month: September 2019

Stellar Ghosts Haunt Stars

Stellar Ghosts Haunt Stars

Observing Type Ia supernovae must be accomplished quickly. This is because they flare into existence, and then dim to darkness, within only a few months. In order to study supernovae that have long since faded, and the stellar white dwarf ghosts that created them, Dr. Kirby and his colleagues used a technique informally named galactic archaeology. The term galactic archaeology refers to …

Fatal Attractions Among The Stars

Fatal Attractions Among The Stars

All of the stars in the observable Universe, both large and small, live out their entire nuclear-fusing main-sequence “lives” by keeping a very delicate and necessary balance between two ancient foes–gravity and radiation pressure. The main-sequence refers to hydrogen-burning stars on the Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram of Stellar Evolution. Main-sequence stars still have enough nuclear-fusing hydrogen fuel to keep themselves bouncy against the …

Matter Gone Missing

Matter Gone Missing

The Universe is thought to have been born about 13.8 billion years ago in the form of an exquisitely small searing-hot broth composed of densely packed particles–generally simply referred to as “the fireball.” Spacetime has been growing colder and colder ever since, as it expands–and accelerates as it expands–from its original furiously hot and glaringly …