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A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

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A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

Post by Dragon on Fri May 11, 2018 3:24 pm

We know that the birthplaces of stars are large molecular clouds of gas and dust found in space.

But what exactly determines the number and kind of stars and planets that are formed in these clouds? How was our Solar system nursed and how did it emerge from such a cloud billions of year ago?

These are mysteries that have been puzzling astronomers for decades, but research published today in Science adds an extra dimension to our understanding.

Knowledge of the 3-dimensional structure of these clouds would be an important leap in our understanding of how stars and planets are born.

The physics responsible for the formation of stars is also responsible for shaping the clouds. But even with the most advanced telescopes in the world we can only see the two-dimensional projections of clouds on the plane of the sky.

Thankfully, there is a way around this problem. A recently discovered type of structure in molecular clouds, called striations, was found to form because of waves.

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Re: A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

Post by Dragon on Fri May 11, 2018 3:27 pm


Credit: Flickr/cafuego, CC BY-SA

The dark band is the Dark Doodad Nebula, a place where new stars and planets can form

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Re: A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

Post by Dragon on Fri May 11, 2018 3:28 pm



3-D model of Musca molecular cloud. Aris Tritsis, ANU, Author provided.

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Re: A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

Post by Dragon on Fri May 11, 2018 3:29 pm



A study led by ANU and the University of Crete in Greece has shed light on Musca, a molecular cloud, hundreds of light years away from Earth.
Musca is surrounded by ordered hair-like structures called striations, which are produced by trapped waves of gas and dust that cause the vibrations of the cloud.

The research team was able to determine the shape of Musca by analysing the spatial frequencies of these vibrations, which were then converted into ringing tones to reveal the ‘Song of Musca’.

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Re: A giant 'singing' cloud in space will help us to understand how star systems form

Post by Dragon on Fri May 11, 2018 3:30 pm



About 1350 light-years from Earth lies the Orion A molecular cloud, the nearest known massive stellar nursery. The new image was taken using the VISTA infrared survey telescope at ESO’s Paranal Observatory in Chile and reveals many young stars. The Orion Nebula, also called Messier 42, is seen towards the left of the image.

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