In space, found a strange ring around a dead star


29/05/2008

Attracted the attention of scientists highly unusual ring around the remains of an exploded star SGR 1900 +14. A star in the center of the ring belongs to a class of objects known as magnetars - dead stars with incredibly strong magnetic field. SpravkaMagnetar - neutron stars with extremely strong magnetic field. Theoretically, the existence of magnetars was predicted in 1992, and the first real evidence of their existence was obtained in 1998 under the supervision of a powerful gamma-and X-ray emission from SGR 1900 +14 in the constellation Aquila. The lifetime of magnetars small, it is about 10,000 years old. (WiKi)

The ring was found by accident. NASA has found his co-worker Stephanie Wachter (Stefanie Wachter) while watching archival material obtained from the telescope Spitzer. Wachter and her colleagues believe that the ring like no one ring found before, formed in 1998, when korkoobraznaya iron surface of the magnetar cracked and exploded in a giant flare. The explosion was so strong that the flash of radiation damaged some of the tools of several NASA spacecraft.

Researchers believe that the magnetar was surrounded by a cloud of dust, and the explosion cleared the middle of the cloud, leaving the outer dust ring. The ring has an oblong shape, measuring about seven by three light-years. It appears flat or two-dimensional, but it is possible that ring may have a more complex three-dimensional structure.

Rings and spheres are common in the universe. For example, young massive stars use their stellar winds (streams of particles emitted by a star) in order to "let the bubbles’ in space, forming a cloud of dust bizarre spherical forms. Later, when these stars die in supernova explosions, their remains scatter, forming beautiful orbs called supernova remnants. It happens that the star already has a cloud of dust. In this case, the explosion of a star forms a glowing ring, like the remains of the supernova 1987A.

But the ring around the magnetar SGR 1900 +14 does not fit into any of these categories. On the one hand, the remains of a supernova and the ring around 1987A emit X-rays and radio waves. Ring around the same SGR 1900 +14 emits nothing. Only the light at certain infrared wavelengths, which sees Spitzer.

A collection of rings and spheres found in the Milky Way. Left to right: light echoes of the remains of a supernova Cassiopeia A; blast wave from the recent explosion of a supernova 1987A; planetary nebula called The Helix.


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