Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Hubble Reveals Oddball Star

Date:
September 1, 2000
Source:
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Summary:
A mysterious object that seems to defy classification has been found by astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The object looks like a young, dust-enshrouded star with narrow jets of material resembling strings of beads streaming from each side.

A mysterious object that seems to defy classification has been found by astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope. The image is available online at:

http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/pictures/wfpc

The object looks like a young, dust-enshrouded star with narrow jets of material resembling strings of beads streaming from each side. It has been classified as a planetary nebula, the glowing remains of a Sun-like star in its death throes, although the Hubble observations suggest it may not fit that classification, either.

The Hubble astronomers, Dr. Raghvendra Sahai of NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., and Lars-Ake Nyman of the European Southern Observatory, Chile, and Onsala Space Observatory, Sweden, suspect this enigmatic object, known as He2- 90, may be a pair of aging stars masquerading as a single youngster. One member of the duo is a bloated red giant star shedding matter from its outer layers. This matter is then captured by gravity in a rotating accretion disk around a compact partner, most likely a young white dwarf (the collapsed remnant of a Sun-like star). The stars are not visible in the Hubble images because they're obscured by a disk of dust.

Each jet has at least six bright clumps of gas speeding away at estimated rates of at least 600,000 kilometers an hour (375,000 miles an hour) and extending at least 100,000 astronomical units (one astronomical unit equals the Earth-Sun distance of 150 million kilometers or 93 million miles). These gaseous clumps are ejected into space about every 100 years and may be caused by periodic instabilities in He2-90's accretion disk. Astronomers believe that magnetic fields associated with accretion disks produce and constrict the pencil-thin jets.

This oddball star was discovered during an imaging survey of planetary nebulae. The images were taken Sept. 28, 1999 with Hubble's Wide Field and Planetary Camera 2, designed and built by JPL. The images and results appear in the Aug. 1 issue of the Astrophysical Journal Letters.

The Space Telescope Science Institute, Baltimore, Md, manages space operations for the Hubble Space Telescope for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C. The Institute is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc., for NASA, under contract with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md. The Hubble Space Telescope is a project of international cooperation between NASA and the European Space Agency.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Hubble Reveals Oddball Star." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 1 September 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000901075818.htm>.
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (2000, September 1). Hubble Reveals Oddball Star. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000901075818.htm
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Hubble Reveals Oddball Star." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/09/000901075818.htm (accessed October 23, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Russian Cosmonauts Kick Off Final Spacewalk of 2014

Russian Cosmonauts Kick Off Final Spacewalk of 2014

Reuters - US Online Video (Oct. 22, 2014) — Russian cosmonauts Maxim Suraev and Alexander Samokutyaev step outside the International Space Station to perform work on the exterior of the station's Russian module. Rough Cut (no reporter narration) Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Comet Siding Spring Grazes Mars' Atmosphere

Newsy (Oct. 19, 2014) — A comet from the farthest reaches of the solar system passed extremely close to Mars this weekend, giving astronomers a rare opportunity to study it. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

Latin America Launches Communications Satellite

AFP (Oct. 17, 2014) — Argentina launches a home-built satellite, a first for Latin America. It will ride a French-made Ariane 5 rocket into orbit, and will provide cell phone, digital TV, Internet and data services to the lower half of South America. Duration: 00:41 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

This Week @ NASA, October 17, 2014

NASA (Oct. 17, 2014) — Power spacewalk, MAVEN’s “First Light”, Hubble finds extremely distant galaxy and more... Video provided by NASA
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins