Star Formation and Death

  • Yoshiaki Sofue
Chapter
Part of the Lecture Notes in Physics book series (LNP, volume 935)

Abstract

The main body of the luminous disk of the galaxy is composed of stars that were born when the galaxy was formed about 13 billion years ago. These first-generation, old stars are today observed in globular clusters, the thick galactic disk, and the central bulge. The Sun was born about 4.6 billion years ago in one of the molecular clouds near the galactic plane.

Some portion of the interstellar gas has survived from being exhausted in the formation of the stars, but has been polluted by contamination of ejected gas from the stars with higher metallicity through stellar winds and supernova explosions. Star formation is thus taking place in the galaxy even today from the remaining gas mostly distributed in the thin, dense gaseous disk near the galactic plane. Newly born, young, and bright stars illuminate and excite surrounding clouds by radiation at various wavelengths, from radio to X-rays. Star- forming regions are thus bright among various objects, and are relatively easily observed and investigated in detail.

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yoshiaki Sofue
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of AstronomyThe University of TokyoMitakaJapan

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