Artistic representation of the dust and gas disk around the massive protostar MM 1a. Image: JD Ilee, University of Leeds
A group of astronomers led by dr. John Ilee from the University of Leeds has discovered a young star that is forming itself like a planet.
Astronomers observed a young massive star, known as MM 1a, and the rotating disk of gas and MM 1
The finding was made with Atacama Large Millimeter / Submillimetre Array (ALMA) in the Chilean desert. Astronomers used interferometry techniques to combine the power of 66 separate shells of ALMA. In this way they were able to observe the material around the two stars for the first time.
In an unusual observation, researchers found that the rotating disk was "fragmented" around MM 1a and MM 1b was outside this disk. 19659004] Stars form in the large dust and gas clouds in interstellar space. When these large clouds collapse under gravity, they spin faster and form a disk around them.
"In stars with low mass like our Sun, planets can form in these disks, in this case star and disk. We have observed that it is so massive that we can not see how a planet formed in the disk but that another star is born, "said Dr. Ilee from the School of Physics and Astronomy in Leeds.
The team also calculated the mass of both stars and found that the mass of MM 1b is less than half the mass of our Sun. In contrast, the mass of MM 1a is about 40 times the mass of our Sun, which means that the binary star system has a mass ratio of 80: 1.
Dr. Ilee reveals that in the past many older massive stars were discovered with a companion star. However, these stars had almost the same mass as their companion star, suggesting that both stars were likely to be siblings together.
"Finding a young binary system with a mass ratio of 80: 1 is very unusual, and proposes a completely different formation process for both objects," Dr. Ilee added.
The team believes that MM 1b could also be surrounded by its own circumstellar disk that has the potential to create its own planets.
The results of the study published in Astrophysical Journal Letters .