Questions tagged [star]

Questions regarding large spheres of plasma undergoing fusion.

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1answer
263 views

Why does the adiabatic exponent decrease at the ionization zones?

The context is the ionization zones in stellar atmospheres or interiors, the Sun, for instance. The adiabatic exponent is the heat capacity ratio: $$\gamma = \frac{c_P}{c_V} = \frac{C_P}{C_V}$$ And,...
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1answer
709 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 ...
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How to calculate Longitude from Right Ascension?

Considering that a star of certain declination is crossing the local meridian at the observer's zenith at an unknown location on the earth. Here, the declination of the star is equal to the observer's ...
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How do I see the milky way?

I've travelled to farms at night, and away from civilation. I don't really know alot about astronomy, but my goal is to see something like this: Stars, lots of them, but that "thick purple cluster of ...
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1answer
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Where do new stars get their hydrogen from? [duplicate]

When stars run out of hydrogen, they explode (though they also use heavier elements for some time) and form nebulae. In the nebulae, new stars are born which use hydrogen as their fuel. So, my ...
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First night on a telescope questions

So I recently got into astronomy and I am using my fathers old Meade EQ1-B reflector telescope. This is my first night using it and I have come across a few questions. To begin, the telescope was left ...
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2answers
389 views

Are there good animations of the movement of proximate stars over long time periods?

After reading about Barnard's Star and how it's approaching us 140 km/sec, I'm curious if there are any visualizations of how the nearest stars to Sol will be moving over the next 100k years or so. ...
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How do we find the exact temperature of a star?

This is a very basic question, but I am a little confused. As far as I know, the temperature of a star is analyzed based on the color of the light it emits. So, if a star is moving away from us, then ...
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Strength of core-envelope coupling in stars (again)

I asked this on the physics SE but it received little attention: Consider a high-mass zero-age main-sequence (ZAMS) (e.g., $m_{\rm ZAMS} \gtrsim 30\,$M$_{\odot}$) star. I understand that the core-...
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1answer
66 views

Why could Quasi-stars (“black hole stars”) have only existed when everything was hydrogen and helium? (no metal “contamination”)

This informative answer to What was the absolute limit to the possible sizes of the first stars formed from “primordial material with no metals”? led me to Wikipedia's Quasi-star; Formation and ...
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Difference between luminosity, luminous flux, and radiant flux?

I've looked this up, and was wondering the differences between them. Luminosity is the total energy emitted by a source, in watts. However, I'm confused about luminous flux and radiant flux. Since ...
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What does the opacity of a molecular transition mean?

In particular, what does it mean when a line (e.g, emission line in stellar wind) is optically thick or thin. I know what an optically think/thick medium is, but how does this concept compare to ...
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1answer
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What does it mean for a star to go nova or supernova? Can I safely observe these?

What does it mean for a star when people say it goes 'nova' or super nova, what are the differences? More importantly, can I safely observe these with an amateur telescope? I imagine they would be ...
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When a star reaches the red giant phase, why does it become more opaque?

Please refer to this answer from Quora: ... a star will become a red giant before it begins burning helium. In fact, it will bloat into a red giant while still burning hydrogen in a shell on the ...
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2answers
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Are there neutron stars whose magnetic axis and rotating axis are the same, and if so what will happen?

I know that there's probably a higher chance of having a neutron star that has its magnetic axis inclined to the rotational axis rather than having it perfectly aligned. If they are not aligned, the ...
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1answer
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Magnetic fields of peculiar HgMn A type stars

Do HgMn (peculiar A type) stars really possess global magnetic fields? See, for example, this paper by Hubrig et al. from 2012.
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What are the minimum element requirements for a star?

What elements would be essential for a star to exist? From what I understand our sun is made of mostly hydrogen and helium and most stars have small amounts of heavier elements like carbon, nitrogen,...
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568 views

Perceiving movement of stars

Are there any stars visible to the naked eye whose position, over a normal human lifetime, can be seen to have changed (relative to other stars in the vicinity)?
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2answers
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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 ...
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1answer
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When will Sirius be closest to the solar system?

Sirius is currently approaching the solar system, at a rate of 5.5 km/s, consequently in the future it will be closer and therefore brighter. When will Sirius pass closest to the solar system? How far ...
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1answer
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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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1answer
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Why is $H_\delta$ prominent in type A stars?

I understand factually that H$\delta$ lines are most prominent in type A stars and less so in more extreme types of stars on the H-R diagram. However I was wondering the reason for why they are not ...
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Visible Stars in Andromeda Galaxy

So when I look at images taken of Andromeda, I see a lot of individual stars. Image by André van der Hoeven It seems to me that the actual individual stars that far away would be too small to ...
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1answer
416 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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199 views

Formation of the First Stars

I've got a few questions about the first stars to form in the universe. First off how might metalicity have impacted the formation of the first stars and also what effect would the absence of metals ...
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1answer
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Can someone calculate the age of the KOI-4878 star?

The star’s low metallicity and fairly high space velocity suggest that KOI-4878 is older than the Sun. But I don't know how to calculate an estimation for the age. KOI-4878 data on Simbad
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2answers
558 views

Can we see the stars at the edge of the Milkyway?

This question proved much more difficult to formulate than I initially imagined. It concerns how far out in the Milky Way that we actually see with different telescopes. I know the Milky Way disk is ...
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1answer
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When did astronomy first discover that the stars are bigger than the moon?

We take it for granted these days that the stars are unimaginably bigger than the planets and the moons. But when you look at the sky, it does not appear this way. The moon looks bigger and brighter ...
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1answer
696 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
262 views

When Betelgeuse goes supernova, will the explosion hit any neighboring stars?

There is evidence Betelgeuse might go supernova "soon". Are there any stars in the vicinity of Betelgeuse that are close enough that they will be hit by the explosion of this supernova? What would be ...
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1answer
234 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 ...
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3answers
168 views

Is there a stellar database that indicates how long ago stars in our Galaxy formed?

There are several ways of determining the age of a star: its position in the HR diagram, the presence of a protoplanetary disk, it belonging to a cluster... When did the stars in our Galaxy form? Do ...
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1answer
297 views

Why can't the surfaces of stars be observed?

If I'm correctly informed, only three stars: Sol, Betelgeuse and Altair have surfaces which have been resolved by telescopes. All other stars are only point sources of light, even in the greatest of ...
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1answer
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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
492 views

Is it likely that intergalactic stars would still retain their planets?

Given that we've discovered hundreds of intergalactic stars (IGs), and that most stars have planets, what do we know about the likelihood of IGs retaining their planets after being ejected from their ...
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1answer
437 views

Distance to Proxima Centauri (Gaia VS New Horizons parallax program)

The current best parallax measurement for the nearest star to the Solar System, Proxima Centauri, has been given by the European Space Agency's Gaia mission. This is $768.5004\; \pm \; 0.2030 \; mas$ (...
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1answer
227 views

What is equation of straight line for a ideal blackbody on the color color diagram?

The color-color diagram is a plot between $U-B$ vs $B-V$ values. For a ideal blackbody, what is the equation of this line? In other words, what does the linear relation between $U-B$ and $B-V$ look ...
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1answer
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Star names and the HYG Database

Related to Convert coordinates between RA/dec and WGS 84 (SRID=4326). WARNING: I'm a noob in astronomy. After import all stars from HYG Database (http://www.astronexus.com/node/34) I noticed some ...
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2answers
111 views

Population density of stars within $13$ light-years of us

This item from Fox News refers to "over 600 stars that came within 13 light-years of the sun". Because of the past-tense "came", they could have meant stars that are not now within 13 light-years of ...
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3answers
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Could the earth become a star if more mass was added?

I've heard that the only difference between a star and a planet is mass, meaning that if planets accredited enough mass they would too become stars. Does this mean that the star started off as a ...
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4answers
179 views

Gravity inside a star?

Recently, I answered this question and need some clarification regarding the gravity when within the radius of a star. I thought that, when something is inside a star (ignoring drag), it will ...
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1answer
237 views

The life course for a massive star from birth to death using the HR Diagram

Could you explain to me the life course for a massive star (30-40 solar masses) from birth to death using the HR Diagram (by showing key events in its life)?
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2answers
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Grammar of stellar classification

How to write G2V correctly (I mean space)? I saw in articles $ G\,2\,V$ and $G2\,V$, on the internet webside it is usually $ G2V$.
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1answer
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Sun from SuperNova

I have read that our sun was created from older star(s) which had exploded in a supernova. If all the matter is travelling away from the central point of explosion, how does it coalesce back into a ...
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2answers
642 views

Is the composition of stars in future made of more and more heavy elements?

In the beginning stars only consisted of the hydrogen element and due to nuclear fusion of those elements in stars and supernova's more heavy elements were created. Because of that, like our Sun, the ...
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2answers
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Are any of the zodiac stars about to go supernova anytime soon?

I have read that Betelgeuse, known as Ardra in Hindu astrology, could go supernova. Are any of the zodiac stars or the stars of lunar mansions about to become a black hole or supernova?
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1answer
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Does Oxygen-burning process produce Neon?

In the book "Horizons_ exploring the universe-Cengage learning (2018)", p200, it states that: Helium fusion produces carbon, and some of the carbon nuclei absorb helium nuclei to form ...
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1answer
128 views

Why don't we detect planets around OB stars and no terrestrial planets around A or early F stars?

Looking at an exoplanet database, I noticed that there are very few planets detected around main-sequence OBA stars, and most of them are gas giants/brown dwarfs. Why can't we detect low-mass planets ...
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1answer
112 views

5 sec flare near Arcturus

Hello fellow amateur and professional astronomers, On July July 17, 2017, I was at an observing session in Avrig, Sibiu county, Romania (45.7288° N, 24.3784° E). At approx 11:30 pm I pointed my green ...
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3answers
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Star map - finding stars

Assume you are given a star map that doesn't have the name of the stars on it. You know the latitude, longitude of the observer and the local time (year, month, day, local time). How could I proceed ...