This is one baby picture you won’t want to miss — a violent newborn star has been born.
The ALMA telescope in Chile has captured a close-up of the glowing material spewing from the newborn star.
The European Southern Observatory described baby stars as “violent objects that eject material at speeds as high as one million kilometres per hour.” This star was caught spewing material, which glows as it crashes into nearby dust and gas, faster than ever measured before, making it more energetic than previously thought.
The glowing mass is called a Herbig-Haro object, named after U.S. and Mexican astronomers. This one is 1,400 light-years away in the constellation Vela.
“ALMA’s exquisite sensitivity allows the detection of previously unseen features in this source, like this very fast outflow,” Hector Arce with Yale University said in a statement.
“ALMA has made it possible to detect features in the observed outflow much more clearly than previous studies. This shows that there will certainly be many surprises and fascinating discoveries to be made with the full array. ALMA will certainly revolutionize the field of star formation,” he continued.
Diego Mardones, a co-author of the paper about the star and researcher with the Universidad de Chile, said the system, although similar to low mass stars at formation, it is “unusual because the outflow impacts the cloud directly on one side of the young star and escapes out of the cloud on the other.” These conditions make it “an excellent system for studying the impact of the stellar winds on the parent cloud from which the young star is formed.”
ALMA consists of an array of 66 antennas and is relatively new. It’s located in one of the driest places on Earth, the Atacama desert.
Watch this zoom sequence that targets Herbig-Haro object HH 46/47:
The Associated Press contributed to this report.