|Spring 2010||Astronomy 110||MWF 9:30 &mdash 10:20|
Stars are born inside giant clouds of cool gas and dust. Such a cloud may contain thousands of dense blobs of gas; some of these blobs collapse under their own weight. Gravitational compression heats the gas until thermonuclear reactions occur. When the production of nuclear energy matches the rate of energy escape into space, the collapse halts and a main-sequence star is born. Eventually, the hydrogen in the star's core is used up, and the star flares up in last burst of brilliance before it dies. If the star is massive enough, it explodes, spewing newly-synthesized elements back into space.
Please read all subsections of each section below.
|12.2||Life as a Low-Mass Star|
|12.3||Life as a High-Mass Star|
|12.4||Symmary of Stellar Lives|
Joshua E. Barnes
(barnes at ifa.hawaii.edu)
25 March 2010