STScI: Hubble Finds Substellar Objects in the Orion Nebula

Find out the latest thinking about our universe.
User avatar
Apathetic Retiree
Posts: 17757
Joined: Mon Aug 28, 2006 2:06 pm
Location: Oklahoma

STScI: Hubble Finds Substellar Objects in the Orion Nebula

Post by bystander » Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:40 pm

Hubble Finds Substellar Objects in the Orion Nebula
NASA | STScI | HubbleSite | 2018 Jan 11

Deep Survey Looks for Faint Objects in Nearby Stellar Nursery
In an unprecedented deep survey for small, faint objects in the Orion Nebula, astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope have uncovered the largest known population of brown dwarfs sprinkled among newborn stars. Looking in the vicinity of the survey stars, researchers not only found several very-low-mass brown dwarf companions, but also three giant planets. They even found an example of binary planets where two planets orbit each other in the absence of a parent star.

Brown dwarfs are a strange class of celestial object that have masses so low that their cores never become hot enough to sustain nuclear fusion, which powers stars. Instead, brown dwarfs cool and fade as they age. Despite their low mass, brown dwarfs provide important clues to understanding how stars and planets form, and may be among the most common objects in our Milky Way galaxy.

Located 1,350 light-years away, the Orion Nebula is a relatively nearby laboratory for studying the star formation process across a wide range, from opulent giant stars to diminutive red dwarf stars and elusive, faint brown dwarfs.

This survey could only be done with Hubble's exceptional resolution and infrared sensitivity. ...
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Know the quiet place within your heart and touch the rainbow of possibility; be
alive to the gentle breeze of communication, and please stop being such a jerk.
— Garrison Keillor

Don't bring me down
Posts: 1805
Joined: Thu Aug 02, 2012 11:24 am
AKA: Bruce
Location: East Idaho

Re: STScI: Hubble Finds Substellar Objects in the Orion Nebula

Post by BDanielMayfield » Fri Jan 12, 2018 5:53 pm

Well all right. This proves indicates that at least the largest planets can form the same way stars do. They don't always have to form in a protostar's accretion disk.

"Happy are the peaceable ... "