International Center for Radio Astronomy Research | 2017 Oct 10
Astronomers have shed fresh light on the importance of hydrogen atoms in the birth of new stars.
Only hydrogen molecules are thought to directly fuel star formation but research published today shows there are more hydrogen atoms than molecules even in young galaxies that are making a lot of stars. ...
In the local Universe close to us about 70 per cent of the hydrogen gas is found in individual atoms, while the rest is in molecules.
Astronomers had expected that as they looked back in time, younger galaxies would contain more and more molecular hydrogen until it dominated the gas in the galaxy. Instead, they found that atomic hydrogen makes up the majority of gas in younger galaxies too. ...
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