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Questions tagged [gas]

Questions regarding matter in its gaseous state, and how it behaves in astronomy (e.g. forming stars in giant molecular clouds).

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1answer
3k views

Starting a fire in a cold planet that was full of flammable gas

What would happen to a cold planet that has a large amount of flammable gas, like Neptune, if we throw some fire into it? Will it burn, or would the flame be extinguished due to the cold?
3
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1answer
76 views

Why are Bok globules so cold?

I have recently read a bit a out Bok globules. One thing, that is repeatedly emphasised is that they are among the coldest objects in space, with a temperature of ~3 K. Why is that so? Naively, I ...
0
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1answer
82 views

Can we get the gas compositions from a gas planets? [closed]

Is it possible to get some gases like hydrogen from gas planets (Saturn, Jupiter, Uranus or Neptune)?
1
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1answer
78 views

Is there a plausible causal mechanism to explain why the Sun would be heating up faster/ sooner than we thought? Question for a novel [closed]

I am writing a novel about what it will be like on earth 500 or so years before the death of our Sun. The Sun is heating up gradually and one day that will negatively affect life on Earth. I know that ...
3
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2answers
137 views

What is the diffuse ionized gas?

I've been trying to find a clean definition what people mean by when they talk about diffuse ionized gas in the interstellar medium, but I couldn't find anything so far. Apparently it's supposed to be ...
2
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1answer
494 views

What are the so called clouds of dust and gas made of?

We constantly read about "clouds of dust and gas" surrounding a (or being the initial state of a) star, but what elements constitute such dust and gas?
2
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1answer
51 views

How is interstellar gas density mapped from GAIA data?

I found the image below in Space.com's article This 3D Color Map of 1.7 Billion Stars in the Milky Way Is the Best Ever Made. The caption for this image reads: The Gaia spacecraft gathered ...
3
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1answer
144 views

What would the pressure and temperature of gas be, right above Jupiter's gas/liquid boundary?

Older pages like this "Exploration of the Solar System" course page describe the transition as being a few hundred kilometers down. More recent findings seem to put the boundary deeper. See The ...
2
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1answer
399 views

Would a spacecraft just go “through” a gas giant?

From my understanding of the word gas giant, it is a planet composed of entirely a gaseous atmosphere, and so planets Jupiter and onwards fall in this category. That being said, what would stop a ...
0
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1answer
168 views

What is the condition for the number density of a gas to be ultra-relativistic or non-relativistic and degenerate or ideal

What is the condition for the number density ($n$) of a gas to be ultra-relativistic or non-relativistic and degenerate or ideal? I found problems in this subject when I was reading about White-...
2
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2answers
119 views

Is this gas cloud or lens effect?

I was going through the zoomable image of Milky way and after zooming to this particular location, we can see a reddish area on the left side of a probably large star. Here is a screenshot I took ...
4
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1answer
261 views

Are gas giants supported by thermal pressure?

I've heard gas giants are supported because there is an equilibrium between thermal pressure and gravity. That is, if Jupiter were to suddenly begin compressing, temperatures would increase to the ...
3
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1answer
114 views

Why is the “green” comet C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy) red in this picture?

In this nice NYTimes 'survey article' "Our Vast Solar System and Its Many Explorers" there is a NEOWISE image of Comet C/2014 Q2 (Lovejoy). See here also. The NASA description of the image says: ...
1
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1answer
630 views

How to show that the Jeans Criterion for Mass, Radius and Density are equivalent?

The gravitational collapse of a gas cloud can be described by the Jeans Criterion for mass, radius and density of the gas cloud, which is (c stands for cloud): $$M_J = (\frac{5kT}{G \mu m_H})^{3/2} (...
1
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1answer
178 views

How do astronomers detect gases that are in the atmosphere of exoplanets?

Exoplanets are planets that are located outside our solar system - whether that be orbiting a star or drifting past one. Now, the closest star to us is Alpha Centauri which is just over four light-...
1
vote
1answer
576 views

What is the equation of state for a relativistic fluid/gas?

Say we have a relativistic fluid/gas, as we have in some astrophyical systems. Now let us write: $e$ - energy density in the fluid's rest frame. $P$ - pressure in the fluid's rest frame. $n$ - ...
3
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0answers
73 views

How do people derive ionized gas mass from optical emission lines in a galaxy spectrum?

Suppose you had an optical spectrum of a galaxy, and you unambiguously detected emission lines from cooling ionized gas -- both forbidden lines like [O II] 3727AA and [O III] 4959,5007AA, as well as ...
11
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2answers
4k views

Why argon instead of another noble gas?

I noticed that the atmospheres of Earth and Mars have a little bit of argon in them (1% to 2%). I checked Venus, too, which has 0.007% argon, but that's still more than any other noble gas in the ...
2
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1answer
306 views

When is it a good aproximation to consider a star to be an ideal gas?

I am currently taking a first course on stellar astrophysics, and I noticed that in some cases we use the ideal gas equation of state for stars, so we also use $\gamma =5/3$. Of course it can only be ...
5
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1answer
74 views

Gas halo of our Milky Way Galaxy

This question relates to a diffuse hot gas halo of our Milky Galaxy. I've read that there is a hot diffuse halo of gas surrounding our Galaxy (NED, Caltech) I was wondering why such a halo can exist? ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

What is a typical value for core-to-star efficiency?

I was reading Unfolding the Laws of Star Formation: The Density Distribution of Molecular Clouds by Kainulainen et al., which discusses star formation rates and efficiencies. One variable used is $\...
2
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1answer
2k views

Can asteroids contain atmosphere?

Gas is abundance in the universe, can a massive asteroid draws in these gas forming a thin atmosphere?
7
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1answer
19k views

What will happen when landing on Jupiter?

Jupiter is a gas giant, so landing on it will not be like landing on Earth, our Moon or Mars etc., as it does not have a solid surface like these. If we have a hypothetical spaceship or probe landing ...
2
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1answer
215 views

Beta profile fit of Virgo cluster gas?

I'm looking for the parameters $r_c$, $\rho_0$ and $\beta$ in a $\beta$-profile fit of the Virgo cluster's ICM density. I just can't find a reference for it. Unlike for Coma (Abell 1656) where it's in ...
4
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1answer
154 views

What is the physics of a gas mass subject to gravity in space?

There are many formulas for atmospheric pressure on earth, but how does gas behave in free space? I am thinking about why stars form. I am guessing that the gas density will influence pressure, as ...
15
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3answers
2k views

What is the difference between gas and dust in astronomy?

Is there a strict difference between gas and dust? In Earthly environment most things become gaseous if heated enough. The temperature of interstellar medium seems to range mostly between 10 and 10 ...