Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Stormy Cloud Of Star Birth Glows In New Spitzer Image

Date:
January 23, 2004
Source:
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Summary:
A dusty stellar nursery shines brightly in a new image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, formerly known as the Space Infrared Telescope Facility. Spitzer's heat-sensing "infrared eyes" have pierced the veiled core of the Tarantula Nebula to provide an unprecedented peek at massive newborn stars.

NASA's new Spitzer Space Telescope, formerly known as the Space Infrared Telescope Facility, has captured in stunning detail the spidery filaments and newborn stars of the Tarantula Nebula, a rich star-forming region also known as 30 Doradus. This cloud of glowing dust and gas is located in the Large Magellanic Cloud, the nearest galaxy to our own Milky Way, and is visible primarily from the Southern Hemisphere. (NASA/JPL-Caltech/Cornell University and University of Leiden)

A dusty stellar nursery shines brightly in a new image from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, formerly known as the Space Infrared Telescope Facility. Spitzer's heat-sensing "infrared eyes" have pierced the veiled core of the Tarantula Nebula to provide an unprecedented peek at massive newborn stars.

The new image is available online at http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu and http://photojournal.jpl.nasa.gov/catalog/PIA05062.

"We can now see the details of what's going on inside this active star-forming region," said Dr. Bernhard Brandl, principal investigator for the latest observations and an astronomer at both Cornell University, Ithaca, N.Y., and the University of Leiden, the Netherlands.

Launched on August 25, 2003, from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, Florida, the Spitzer Space Telescope is the fourth of NASA's Great Observatories, a program that also includes Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, the Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Hubble Space Telescope. Spitzer's state-of-the-art infrared detectors can sense the infrared radiation, or heat, from the farthest, coldest and dustiest objects in the universe.

One such dusty object is the Tarantula Nebula. Located in the southern constellation of Dorado, in a nearby galaxy called the Large Magellanic Cloud, this glowing cloud of gas and dust is one of the most dynamic star-forming regions in our local group of galaxies. It harbors some of the most massive stars in the universe, up to 100 times more massive than our own Sun, and is the only nebula outside our galaxy visible to the naked eye.

While other telescopes have highlighted the nebula's spidery filaments and its star-studded core, none was capable of fully penetrating its dust-enshrouded pockets of younger stars.

The new Spitzer image shows, for the first time, a more complete picture of this huge stellar nursery, including previously hidden stars. The image also captures in stunning detail a hollow cavity around the stars, where intense radiation has blown away cosmic dust.

"You can see a hole in the cloud as if a giant hair dryer blew away all the gas and dust," said Brandl.

By studying this portrait of a family of stars, astronomers can piece together how stars in general, including those like our Sun, form.

JPL manages the Spitzer Space Telescope mission for NASA's Office of Space Science, Washington. Science operations are conducted at the Spitzer Science Center at the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena. JPL is a division of Caltech.

Additional information about the Spitzer Space Telescope is available at http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu.


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. "Stormy Cloud Of Star Birth Glows In New Spitzer Image." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 23 January 2004. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040123002444.htm>.
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. (2004, January 23). Stormy Cloud Of Star Birth Glows In New Spitzer Image. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 21, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040123002444.htm
NASA/Jet Propulsion Laboratory. "Stormy Cloud Of Star Birth Glows In New Spitzer Image." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2004/01/040123002444.htm (accessed April 21, 2014).

Share This



More Space & Time News

Monday, April 21, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

SpaceX's Dragon Spacecraft Captured by International Space Station

SpaceX's Dragon Spacecraft Captured by International Space Station

Reuters - US Online Video (Apr. 20, 2014) SpaceX's unmanned Dragon spacecraft makes a scheduled Easter Sunday rendezvous with the International Space Station. Rough Cut (no reporter narration). Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station

Raw: Easter Morning Delivery for Space Station

AP (Apr. 20, 2014) Space station astronauts got a special Easter treat: a cargo ship full of supplies. The SpaceX company's cargo ship, Dragon, spent two days chasing the International Space Station following its launch from Cape Canaveral. (April 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Hoax? Cosmetics Company Wants To Brighten The Moon

A Hoax? Cosmetics Company Wants To Brighten The Moon

Newsy (Apr. 19, 2014) FOREO, a Swedish cosmetics company, says it wants to brighten the moon to lower electricity costs. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station

Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station

AP (Apr. 18, 2014) On it's second attempt this week, The Space X company launched Friday from Cape Canaveral to ferry supplies to the International Space Station. (April 18) Video provided by AP
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:
from the past week

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