SPACE PHOTOS THIS WEEK: Star Birth, Active Sun, More

SPACE PHOTOS THIS WEEK: Star Birth, Active Sun, More
<< Previous   3 of 5   Next >>
December 23, 2009--Planets take shape in the dusty disk around a young star in an artist's conception. The scene is an example of what things might be like around MWC 419, a blue star about 2,100 light-years from Earth that astronomers recently probed using the W. M. Keck Observatory in Hawaii.

Using a device that reads near-infrared light, the team was able to measure the dust disk's temperature to within about 50 million miles of the star--about half the distance from Earth to the sun.

Temperature differences in the disk might be linked to chemical composition and other properties, which may affect how planets form around the star.
— Image courtesy David A. Hardy
 
NEWS FEEDS    After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed. After installing a news reader, click on this icon to download National Geographic News's XML/RSS feed.

Get our news delivered directly to your desktop—free.
How to Use XML or RSS




 

50 Drives of a Lifetime

Listen to your favorite National Geographic news daily, anytime, anywhere from your mobile phone. No wires or syncing. Download Stitcher free today.