Hubble sees an unexpected population of young-looking stars

Nov 02, 2012
Credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA

(—The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope offers an impressive view of the center of globular cluster NGC 6362. The image of this spherical collection of stars takes a deeper look at the core of the globular cluster, which contains a high concentration of stars with different colors.

Tightly bound by gravity, are composed of old stars, which, at around 10 billion years old, are much older than the sun. These clusters are fairly common, with more than 150 currently known in our galaxy, the Milky Way, and more which have been spotted in other galaxies.

Globular clusters are among the oldest structures in the Universe that are accessible to direct observational investigation, making them from the early years of the cosmos.

Astronomers infer important properties of globular clusters by looking at the light from their constituent stars. For many years, they were regarded as ideal laboratories for testing the standard stellar evolution theory. Among other things, this theory suggests that most of the stars within a globular cluster should be of a similar age.

Recently, however, high performed in numerous globular clusters, primarily with the , have led some to question this widely accepted theory. In particular, certain stars appear younger and bluer than their companions, and they have been dubbed . NGC 6362 contains many of these stars.

Since they are usually found in the core regions of clusters, where the concentration of stars is large, the most likely explanation for this unexpected population of objects seems to be that they could be either the result of stellar collisions or transfer of material between stars in . This influx of new material would heat up the star and make it appear younger than its neighbors.

NGC 6362 is located about 25 000 light-years from Earth in the constellation of Ara (The Altar). British astronomer James Dunlop first observed this globular cluster on 30 June 1826.

This image was created combining ultraviolet, visual and infrared images taken with the Wide Field Channel of the Advanced Camera for Surveys and the Wide Field Camera 3. An image of NGC 6362 taken by the MPG/ESO 2.2-meter telescope will be published by the European Southern Observatory on Wednesday.

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User comments : 5

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1 / 5 (8) Nov 02, 2012
More Blue Straggler news? Ah the confusion....Say it ain't so!

For a description of how these OLD blue stragglers form in dense regions of clusters under SubQuantum Kinectics physics, see my comments.
1 / 5 (1) Nov 10, 2012
We're not gonna give in, we just call them "young-looking" stars. Still, "young-being" stars may appear when a dark Jeans cluster merges with an existing globular cluster. The Jeans cluster's cold (and thus dark) clouds, aka MACHOs, can be warmed to grow and merge, and form new stars. The very same idea explains the disk of young stars near the Galactic center, while one of the MACHOs achieved to be released just towards the Galactic center, aka the earth mass cloud that heads towards the black hole there.
1 / 5 (4) Dec 19, 2012
And as I conjectured here, blues would be found near the core of our galaxy.

Blues in the bulge.

Using LaViolette's model, these kind of predictions are rather easy.

1 / 5 (1) Dec 19, 2012
Using LaViolette's model, these kind of predictions are rather easy
OK, try to reproduce this prediction for us here.. The mainstream physics scenarios invoked to explain this formation involve either star formation in a massive star cluster offset from the Galactic Center that would have migrated to its current location once formed, or star formation within a massive, compact gas accretion disk around the central black-hole. In which point the LaViolette's model describes these blue stars better?
1 / 5 (4) Dec 19, 2012
The Blues are formed from accelerated growth from within, though nucleation of new non-metallic matter, thereby appearing young in traditional models, though they may be of considerable age. Their growth rate is accelerated with their growing mass, and when located in a region of space containing many nearby massive objects, such as other stars in a dense cluster or massive gas clouds or near the supermassive galactic core star.

The globulars are likely formed near the galactic center, and migrate to the netherlands, growing all the while. The Blues form preferentially near the centers of the clusters for the same reasons.

Does this clear things up?

It just that modern models are backwards. No wonder so many are confused. A square peg will never fit in a round hole. Still, astronomers Bang Away, at the fantasy.

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