Questions regarding large spheres of plasma undergoing fusion.

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2answers
177 views

Find distance from star to star?

How do you find the distance from a star/planet/black hole to another? I know people can calculate the distance from Earth to a star, but what about from one to another?
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3answers
533 views

What decides the direction in which the accretion disk spins?

Planets lie on the same plane because of the accretion disk formed during the Protostar stage, as I read in this question. I also read about the collision of particles in the gas cloud causing the ...
7
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1answer
155 views

Will the Sun rotate slower in red giant form?

When the Sun runs out of hydrogen to fuse it will grow bigger in size and my question is does it rotate more slowly, like a spinning ice skater extending their arms to reduce angular velocity? What ...
7
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3answers
341 views

Statistically, what would the average distance of the closest black hole be?

The closest confirmed black hole is several thousand light years away from earth. Our galaxy has about 100 billion stars. I didn't find any reliable information on the black hole count of ratio versus ...
7
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2answers
636 views

What would happen if a body were to fall into a neutron star?

We know neutron stars as a very massive object with extremely strong gravitational forces that composes mostly of neutrons. I couldn't help but wonder, what would happen if an object fell into a ...
7
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1answer
238 views

What is a hypernova and have we observed any?

Inspired by the question "What does it mean for a star to go nova or supernova? Can I safely observe these?", I am curious about what hypernovas are? Have we observed any occurring, or the at least ...
7
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1answer
397 views

Are stars NML Cygni, UY Scuti, VY Canis Majoris and VV Cephei near the ends of their lives?

Are the four stars mentioned in the title stars that are going to go supernova, or are they stars that are in mid-life, like our Sun, but just happen to be so much larger than our Sun?
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4answers
538 views

Burning Out Stars

In the book "A Really Short History Of Nearly Everything", I read that the larger the star is, the faster it burns itself. Whys that? Wouldn't there be more energy to burn if it's larger, and just be ...
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2answers
1k views

Where do the heavier elements come from?

Partly inspired by this question, the end result of stellar fusion is Iron-56 (eventually, after some decay). Then it explodes. How/where then to the heavier elements come from. The answer here ...
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1answer
205 views

Can a star have a ring system?

I often hear about planetary ring systems, and even some moons might have them, but how about stars? Can a star also have rings?
6
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1answer
427 views

How do star densities work?

If we take a look at stars more massive than the Sun, their densities vary a lot. UY Scuti is an extremely low-density star that's only 8.5x more massive than the Sun, but is 1000-2000x its size. ...
6
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1answer
1k views

What is the origin of the OBAFGKM classification system?

Once a body has been identified as a star it is classified into a subsection of either O,B,A,F,G,K or M (I think there are also 3 more letters recently added) What is the origin of this ...
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2answers
370 views

How much mass will the Sun have when it becomes a white dwarf?

In 4 billion years, when our Sun sheds all of its outer gas layers and turns into a white dwarf, how much mass will the white dwarf have compared to what the sun has today? Will the planets still ...
6
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1answer
148 views

How often are new astronomical objects (variable stars, supernovae, comets, etc) discovered by amateurs?

How often are new astronomical objects (variable stars, supernovae, comets, etc) discovered by amateurs? Where could one report new findings?
6
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1answer
107 views

How would light from a blue or red star affect the way we see?

How would things look if we saw them through the light of a blue or red star? Would there be any changes?
6
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1answer
405 views

If we were to see the Sun with our naked eyes from the Orion belt, would all planets be encompassed inside the star? Is this calculable?

When we see a star it looks much bigger in diameter to us than it really is, this picture (extracted from here) explains what I mean: Notice that the point we see in the skynight, represented by ...
6
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1answer
82 views

What's the bleeding-edge model for how Population III stars are born and evolve?

I'm trying to do a brief literature review to find out what the best current models for population III stellar evolution are. I was hoping that someone with more expertise in the area could perhaps ...
6
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1answer
97 views

What is the brightest star (relative magnitude) in M31?

I am wondering what the brightest individual star is in M31, the Andromeda Galaxy. Specifically, brightest as seen from Earth (so relative magnitude).
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4answers
194 views

Image sets for testing stacking algorithms?

I am looking for sets of astronomical images for testing different kinds of stacking algorithms. The idea is simple: if one has $N$ images of the same object, the signal-to-noise ratio of the ...
6
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1answer
78 views

Astronomical databases for machine learning?

I was reading this question about open problems in astronomy. The bounty-receiving answer says that I have just left the field where some colleagues are trying to develop some software to use ...
6
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2answers
94 views

Does the shape of a supernova remnant depend on the progenitor star's magnetic field?

The magnetic field activity in a star can be very chaotic and my question is are they somehow related?
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3answers
536 views

What would the night sky look like if Earth orbited an intergalactic star?

If the Earth and its host star were located exactly in-between the Milky Way and Andromeda would the night sky be completely void of light? Would stars be visible to the unaided eye? So there could ...
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2answers
6k views

Is there any planet/star bigger than VY Canis Majoris?

Compared to VY Canis Majoris, our Sun is more like a speck of space dust. Is there any planet or star which is known to us that is bigger than the VY Canis Majoris?
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1answer
357 views

Why can we see stars but not astronaut on the moon

A question came up today in astronomy class and it got me wondering all night. How is it that if stars are so far away, we can see them so clearly but we cannot see astronauts on the moon.
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4answers
547 views

Do solar systems have to evolve in a galaxy?

Is it possible for a solar system like ours to exist and evolve apart from all other star systems and galaxies. Sort of like a stand alone solar system or rogue solar system for lack of a better name. ...
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2answers
368 views

Does the earth's atmosphere act as a spherical lens and refract light from space?

If so by how much does it "spoil" the view of stars and galaxies etc. Is this error noticable, when compared to pictures taken from outer space.
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1answer
509 views

Estimating the angle covered by the star trails and deducing how long the exposure lasted

How would you estimate the angle covered by the star trails and deduce how long the exposure lasted in the following image? Here is the photo's caption: Star trails beyond the Gemini ...
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2answers
280 views

Does natural satellite(s) of a planet affects its orbital velocity around a star?

Please excuse me for a lay question. As we know, to calculate the orbital velocity, we take the mass of the orbiting body, the mass of the body being orbited and the distance between the two bodies ...
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2answers
146 views

Why when we look through a telescope in space, do the billions of stars not block our view from seeing further?

I know that we are able to "see back into time" by looking very far away through telescopes such as the Hubble telescope, but my question is, wouldn't you run into at least a couple of stars that were ...
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1answer
111 views

How small a star can provide Sun-level illumination to its planets?

...or how small can a solar system be, to sustain an Earth-like planet? Sun is not really small, and 1AU is pretty far when you look at orbital radii of exoplanets and size of their stars. How small ...
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2answers
100 views

Does Tobler's First Law of Geography Apply to Star Composition?

There is a principle in Geography called Tobler's First Law of Geography which states that "Everything is related to everything else, but near things are more related than distant things." Does this ...
5
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1answer
145 views

How can we be sure that we have identified very distant stars correctly?

From reading this question on calculating distance to stars and from a bit of background reading on the standard candle theory I still don't see how we can confirm that a star we see at one distance ...
5
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3answers
126 views

If a white dwarf collides with a giant star, could it create a TZO?

Thorne–Żytkow objects (TZOs) form from collisions between neutron stars and main sequence or giant stars. Ultimately, the neutron star becomes the "core" of the giant star. However, could this also ...
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2answers
347 views

Why are there no stars on New Horizons images of Pluto

I followed the New Horizons Mission a little, and saw among others this image of Pluto: I wonder, why you can't see any stars on it. As far as my very basic knowledge in astronomy goes, I think you ...
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1answer
306 views

Can I see the star of Bethlehem at Christmas? [closed]

In the Christian tradition the first Christians are believed to be three wise men who followed the star of Bethlehem to the stable where Jesus was supposed to be born. Is it with some accuracy known ...
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1answer
49 views

Do the magnetic fields of stars and/or other planets reverse?

I've heard of the magnetic field of the earth reversing poles over the course of thousands of years but do stars and other planets (specifically gas giants) also experience this? If so how does it ...
5
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1answer
157 views

Entropy of black hole

A line from one of the answers on a different question got me thinking: The simplest way to see this is probably that a black hole has a much higher entropy than a star or even another type of ...
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0answers
61 views

What is the frequency distribution for luminosity classes in the Milky Way Galaxy?

I'm working on a game concept that does some mild simulation of realistic stellar classes and luminosities. In particular, I'd like to roughly model the general frequencies of the classes and ...
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5answers
418 views

Why aren't there galaxy-sized balls of iron out there?

Since we know that stars burn out, collapse, or blow up when too many of their atoms fuse inti iron, then how come, with all the ancient galaxies we've been observing, there isn't one galaxy whose ...
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4answers
298 views

Is it possible to extend the life of a star?

Is it true that when a star 'runs out' of its fuel, it hasn't really used up all its hydrogen, it still has hydrogen left, but the hydrogen is not at its center where the fusion happens. If something ...
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3answers
462 views

What gases are needed to make a star?

What gases do you need to start the creation of a star, and why do you need these gases? What are their functions?
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1answer
110 views

What is the ratio of “real” stars in the sky?

When you look at the sky without any utilities like binocular or telescope, what is the rough ratio of "real" stars to other objects like planets, the moon, asteroids, satellites? 90% stars - 10 % ...
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3answers
164 views

Pulsation Modes of Cepheids

There are various modes of Cepheids like single modes: fundamental (F), first overtone (1O), and likewise. And then we have double modes: F/1O, 1O/2O etc. triple modes: 1O/2O/3O etc. ...
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2answers
95 views

Rate of Mass Loss from the Solar Wind

This is problem 1-4 from Principles of Stellar Evolution and Nucleosynthesis by Clayton: Assuming at the Earth a characteristic velocity of 400km/s and density of 10amu/cm$^{3}$ for the solar wind, ...
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2answers
327 views

Can we see individual stars in other galaxies?

Just wondering if we can examine individual stars from other galaxies, or if we are pretty much stuck with the billions that are in the Milky Way?
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2answers
90 views

Massive Nearby Stars

Is there a possibility that I will find records of stars with masses around 25-30 solar masses within 30 parsecs of solar system. If not, how far do I need to look?
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3answers
238 views

Is there a flaw with the newer purposes and correlations attributed to the HR diagram? (And would a third axis of mass correct the enclosed flaw?)

When I was younger, I was looking at HR diagrams, and began to experiment with the HR diagram. I was looking at plotting different groups of stars on the HR diagram when I found RV Tauri stars. ...
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1answer
68 views

Why do pre-main sequence stars show lithium in absorption?

This paper and this paper state without discussion that the presence of lithium absorption in the stars they observe as strong evidence of these stars being pre-main sequence stars. Because they state ...
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1answer
93 views

How many stars are in the Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy?

The Sculptor Dwarf Galaxy is a small satellite Galaxy of the Milky Way. There are many such satellites galaxies and I'm trying to compile basic data on them. However, I can't find an estimate for the ...
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1answer
135 views

Why is metallicity important in the death of stars?

I always thought that mass was the sole determinant of a star's fate. Then I saw the table here. So why does metallicity influence a star's ability to become a black hole or neutron star? Does it have ...