SCIENCE IN THE NEWS DAILY
Two Stars Caught Fusing into One
from Science News
For stellar astronomers, "the two shall become one flesh" just took on a whole new meaning.
Scientists have directly observed for the first time the merger of two closely orbiting stars. Experts have suggested for decades that such stars--which whirl so close to each other that their outer layers actually touch--should ultimately commingle. The new work, by Romuald Tylenda of the Nicolaus Copernicus Astronomical Center in Torun, Poland and collaborators, catches the stars in the act.
The researchers' claim of catching the stars in the act is "not just plausible; it's compelling," says Robert Williams of the Space Telescope Science Institute in Baltimore, who was not involved in the study. The results, to appear in an upcoming Astronomy & Astrophysics, add to previous work by Williams and colleagues to understand the nature of the star pair, called V1309 Scorpii.
Connect With Us:
PODCASTS: Expanding With the Cosmos
Using the Atacama Cosmology Telescope (ATC), a 6.5-meter microwave collector in Chile, cosmologists are piecing together the early history of the known universe. In an exclusive American Scientist interview, Arthur Kosowsky—a member of the ATC team and a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Pittsburgh—discusses how he is using ATC to reach back in time billions of years to search for gravitational waves that could verify inflation and reveal unprecedented details about how the cosmos was born.
To view all multimedia content, click "Latest Multimedia."
Receive notification when new content is posted from the entire website, or choose from the customized feeds available.