Denver, Colorado (PRWEB) August 22, 2012
For over two decades, NASA’s Hubble Telescope has provided mankind with a variety of revealing images of space extending beyond the Milky Way. Although NASA has been generating a lot of news with the recent landing of Mars rover “Curiosity,” the organization has recently captured an image of one dying star. The image of U Camelopardalis (U Cam), a red giant star in the Camelopardalis constellation, was recently highlighted in an article from The Huffington Post. As the article describes, the image has provided humans with a rare look at “This is the last death gasp of a dying star.” For Jackson Crutcher, a passionate follower of intergalactic studies, the latest U Cam offers a greater understanding of the vast, yet delicate universe.
Jackson Crutcher explains, “Red giants are an incredible part of stellar evolution. They show that not everything in the universe can last forever, as U Cam is currently demonstrating. Red giants are particularly interesting, because they provide scientists with a way to observe the complete life cycle of a star; this phase specifically results from a gradual exhaustion of hydrogen emitted from the star’s core.” Conversely, red dwarfs are also stars that are estimated to be at the end of their life cycle, but due to their own chemical compositions and lack of an inert core of helium they are projected to have a lifespan that extends beyond that of the universe, and thus are unable to be observed.
According to the article, U Cam’s “firework” reaction has made the star appear much larger than it is, signifying how widespread the light emission is. According to NASA, as a carbon star an eruption like this happens every few thousand years when its core begins to fuse. Although the star has been labeled to be in its “death phase,” the article also indicates that it will be a few centuries before U Cam is completely gone. However, this time is not particular long when compared to the evolution of the sun, which is expected to enter its red giant phase in approximately five billion years.
Jackson Crutcher concludes, “U Cam is just one of many amazing images captured by the Hubble Telescope. I recommend that if anyone wants to see organic works of art to simply look at the vast portfolio of images that the Hubble has provided. These images are not only beautiful, but they truly express how expansive the universe is and how much is outside our own world.”
Jackson Crutcher is a science-fiction enthusiast who offers an advanced knowledge of planetary studies. Although Crutcher actively studies many areas of space exploration, he is particularly focused on Mars research. In addition to his appreciation of NASA’s incredible technological advancements, he is a strong supporter of astronauts, citing them as “real-life superheroes.”