Stellar Birthplaces in the Whirlpool Galaxy

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Researchers have charted vast areas of the dense, cold gas of star nurseries in a neighboring galaxy for the first time.

This illustration depicts the distribution of diazenylium molecule radiation (fa
This illustration depicts the distribution of diazenylium molecule radiation (false colours) in the Whirlpool Galaxy, compared with an optical image. - The reddish areas in the photograph represent luminous gas nebulae containing hot, massive stars traversing dark zones of gas and dust in the spiral arms. The presence of diazenylium in these dark regions suggests particularly cold and dense gas clouds. © Graphic: Thomas Müller (HdA/MPIA), S. Stuber et al. (MPIA), NASA, ESA, S. Beckwith (STScI) und das Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA) all images in original size .
An international research team led by the Max Planck Institute for Astronomy (MPIA) and involving the University of Bonn has mapped the cold, dense gas of future star nurseries in one of our neighboring galaxies with an unprecedented degree of detail. The data will enable the researchers for the first time to mount an in-depth study of the conditions that exist within the gas during the early stages of star formation outside the Milky Way at the scale of individual star-forming regions. ...
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