Stellar eggs near galactic center hatching into baby stars


Research News


Astronomers found a number of stellar eggs containing baby stars around the center of the Milky Way using the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA). Previous studies had suggested that the environment there is too harsh to form stars. These findings indicate that star formation is more resilient than researchers thought.

Stars form in stellar eggs, cosmic clouds of gas and dust which collapse due to gravity. If something interferes with the gravity driven contraction, star formation will be suppressed. There are many potential sources of interference near the Galactic Center. Strong turbulence can stir up the clouds and prevent them from contracting, or strong magnetic fields can support the gas against self-gravitational collapse. Previous observations indicated that star formation near the Galactic Center is much less efficient.

To investigate the mysteries of the suppressed star formation, a team led by Xing Lu, an astronomer at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, used ALMA to observe regions near the Galactic Center which contain ample gas, but no known star formation. Surprisingly, the team discovered more than 800 dense cores of gas and dust.

“The discovery leads to the question of whether they are actually ‘stellar eggs’ or not.” explains Lu. To answer this question, the team again used ALMA to search for energetic gas outflows which are indicative of stars forming in stellar eggs. Thanks to ALMA’s high sensitivity and high spatial resolution, they detected 43 small and faint outflows in the clouds. Lu comments, “our observations prove that even in the strongly disturbed areas around the Galactic Center, baby stars still form.”

The research team is now analyzing ALMA’s higher resolution observation data to better understand the processes driving the gas outflows and star formation near the Galactic Center.


From EurekAlert!

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March 30, 2021 2:23 am

As the space expands (red shift) and galaxies drift apart, gravity keeps pulling stars back, i.e. outwards acceleration of expansion is exactly balanced by inward acceleration of gravity. If large mass’ gravity overrides the space expansion then the expansion could not have started since the mass concentration and gravity was much stronger in the early Universe. It is a bit odd that two are so evenly balanced that no intra-galctic shift in either direction has been observed (goldielocks galaxies)

Mark - Helsinki
March 30, 2021 2:23 am

“Stars form in stellar eggs, cosmic clouds of gas and dust which collapse due to gravity”

This is not how stars actually form. That’s a decade out of date.
Starts are observed forming with only 20-30% of the alleged required density of “gas and dust” required by theory.
Something else also, other than gravity, assists in condensing gas and dust

Reply to  Mark - Helsinki
March 30, 2021 3:00 am

“only 20-30% of the alleged required density”

That’s a big difference. What’s making up the shortfall…shock waves?

Joseph Zorzin
Reply to  Alastair Brickell
March 30, 2021 7:41 am

dark matter? it’s neither dust nor gas but has gravity

March 30, 2021 2:26 am

If electrical forces are involved then there is nothing strange. If the only explanation is gravity then it is mysterious!

Reply to  Lars Silen
March 30, 2021 2:54 am

“then it is mysterious”

Wot, like DOG moving in mysterious ways ??

Reply to  Lars Silen
March 30, 2021 4:18 pm

How the “self-gravitational collapse” is even possible?
If the volume of gas decrease then the pressure/temperature will increase and the gas will expand. If you want to compress gas, you need to do work. And object can’t do work to itself by gravity.

That theory of self collapsing gas is just full nonsense.

What happens to gas in the balloon if you brake the balloon in Vacuum? Will it spread all over the space or will it pull itself to an tiny ball?

Reply to  khellstr
March 30, 2021 6:53 pm

If you “brake” an astronomically large balloon, containing a star’s mass in gas, in space, the gas will initially expand, but cools as it does so. It will then contract back under its own gravity. It loses the heat of contraction by radiating into space. Finally, it does get rather hot, enough to initiate fusion. By thinking of balloons you are conceptually forgetting about the force of gravity provided by a stellar mass.

Reply to  khellstr
March 31, 2021 11:56 pm

Balloon in a vaccum chamber.

Reply to  Ruleo
March 31, 2021 11:57 pm


March 30, 2021 2:45 am

Oh, where to start! “Turbulence”? “Previous studies”? “Stellar eggs”?
It is okay to speculate, we must speculate, speculation is what makes for science. Spreading your speculations as scientific gospel, on the other hand, makes for terrible nonsense ideas like black holes and dark matter, and every few years, somebody sees something real that splats “cosmig egg” all over your face.
For those who enjoy the illusion of an expanding universe, I dare you to think about red shift in an isotropic universe, but this time, instead of the two dimensions of your TV, think in the four dimensions of space, and time.
…and now they tell us the Andromeda galaxy had a change of heart, turned around, and is about to crash into us, probably it wants to go visit the loo one more time, back at the Big Bang Bathroom, which, in an isotropic universe, should be somewhere just down the road from #44 Idjit street, Hubbaloo, Crazyfornia, or wherever the latest telescope is being built.
Ya’ll realise an isotropic universe means we sit at the centre, just like the Church told Copernicus, right?
The more things change…

Jim Masterson
Reply to  paranoid goy
March 30, 2021 11:28 am

It’s unfortunate that many people learn just enough astronomy to become dangerous and then they stop learning. If you believe that astronomers are saying that all galaxies are moving away from each other, then that is wrong. Galaxies are members of gravitationally bound entities known as clusters. For instance, the Virgo cluster contains 1500-2000 galaxies. The Virgo cluster is made up of several sub-clusters that seem to be merging. And the Virgo super-cluster includes the Local Group–which includes our galaxy and the galaxy you’re calling the Andromeda galaxy. (It’s official name is actually M-31, that is, the 31st object in Messier’s catalog.) M-31 and about 80 other objects in the Local Group are not part of the general expansion of the Universe.

The space between galaxy clusters is expanding. That’s what causing the expansion of the Universe. The belief that galaxies are moving through space is also wrong. It’s possible to test whether galaxies are moving through space faster and faster the further distant they are or if they are stuck in their invidual spaces and it’s space that is expanding. It’s the latter.


Reply to  Jim Masterson
March 30, 2021 11:54 am

“It’s unfortunate that many people learn just enough astronomy…”
Originally the object in the sky was known as the Great Andromeda Nebula. That was before that great debate on the nature of the nebula and the discovery of Cepheid variables embedded in the nebula. M31 is the name from the Messier Catalog which is typically used by amateur astronomers, but the object is also known as NGC 224 to astronomers working in the visible, IRAS 00400+4059 to those working in the infrared, J00424433+4116074 to those working in the radio wavelengths… So many official names all for the same object in the sky.

The Local Group was a term coined by Hubble to describe the occupants of space near our galaxy. It is not clear if all of the members of the Local Group are gravitational bound together, some dwarf galaxies may have proper motion velocities that exceed the local escape velocity. Remember astrophysicists had to invoke Dark Matter to make our Galaxy close, same problem applies to Andromeda and the Local Group. Want to make anything gravitational bound? Just add dark matter, something we cannot see to explain something we can.

By the way, did you know that image of the Andromeda Galaxy at the prime focus of the 200-inch Hale is over three feet wide??? Of course Hale does not have sufficient field of view to capture all in a single image.

Jim Masterson
Reply to  BsquaredFH
March 30, 2021 12:36 pm

but the object is also known as NGC 224 to astronomers working in the visible

Yes, I’m aware of other names for various objects. It’s like archeology. The trick is to know when to stop digging.

Stars sometime have several names too. One naming convention is to list stars in a constellation in decreasing order of brightness. The brightest star is given the name “alpha,” the next brightest “beta,” and so on. The constellation’s name is then inflected to the Latin genitive case and added to the end. The Latin genitive of Andromeda is Andromedae. Therefore, the brightest star in Andromeda is Alpha Andromedae (or Alpha of Andromeda). The star also has an Arabic name: Alpheratz. Apparently, there are other names too. And Alpha Andromedae is really a star system of at least two members.

The designation of brightest may not last as many stars are variable. For example, Beta Orionis (Rigel) is usually brighter than Alpha Orionis (Betelgeuse).

So another name for M-31 or NGC 224 or whatever could be Galaxy Andromedae. But that would assume there’s only one galaxy within the confines of the constellation of Andromeda.

I could go on, but now would probably be a good time to stop digging.


Jim Masterson
Reply to  BsquaredFH
March 30, 2021 1:32 pm

It is not clear if all of the members of the Local Group are gravitational bound together . . . .

Yes, you are right. I picked the wrong term. The motions of objects in a cluster are due to gravitational influences and not necessarily due to the general expansion of the Universe. But gravitationally bound is too strong a term.


Jon R
Reply to  Jim Masterson
March 30, 2021 11:59 am

It’s getting challenging to find solid information that isn’t too technical.

Reply to  Jim Masterson
March 30, 2021 2:24 pm

If dark energy is stronger than galaxies’ gravity within clusters galaxies would move apart.
If gravity is stronger than dark energy then the galaxies clusters would collapse.
i.e. local clusters dark energy = gravitational force within local clusters whatever their size happen to be.
Odd that.
There is dark energy that interacts with space time, there is dark matter that interacts with mass only, both of which we know next to nothing.
There is the light’s red shift propagating within both of the above unknown physical domains and we assume we know everything about it.
To many assumptions regarding all of the above three in order to formulate credible hypothesis, while the time for a theory is a long way off in the future.

Jim Masterson
Reply to  Vuk
March 30, 2021 3:01 pm

I think you are confused. Rocky Jones, Space Ranger, could travel everywhere in the galaxy with just a rocket–and in a few minutes too–without all this space-time nonsense. And he had something called a “cold light” that would make his ship invisible. So he could pretend to be a Romulan before there were Romulans (1954).


Reply to  Jim Masterson
March 31, 2021 12:35 am

No I’m not confused, and have no idea what are you on about, sounds a bit of some kind of childish nonsense.

Reply to  paranoid goy
March 30, 2021 1:12 pm

an isotropic universe means we sit at the centre”: No, it doesn’t. Where did you get that idea? The universe is isotropic from any viewpoint, our galaxy or any other.

Reply to  mcswelll
March 30, 2021 2:43 pm

Yes it does, centre is at the location of any star or any galaxy or any cluster of galaxies even if 45 billion light years away from us, apparently universe is 90 billion years across despite being 13+ billion years old.
Centre of the universe is here, there and everywhere, any place you care to imagine, even beyond our information’s event horizon.

Reply to  Vuk
March 31, 2021 11:23 am

I guess you could say that; but it depends on what you mean by “centre” (or as my spell checker insists, “center”). If EVERYwhere is the centre, then I would say the very term “centre” has lost any meaning.

Reply to  mcswelll
March 31, 2021 2:40 pm

Indeed, there is no such place. We can tell where is centre of square, rectangular or a circle, but can not tell where is the centre of a line (it is infinitely long) or a surface of a sphere, the ‘centre’ if you want to have one, could be anywhere.
Why do we occasionally to have a ‘centre’?
In order to define frame of reference, i.e. set (0,0,0, t) coordinates reference to be able to do calculations related to distances, velocities, accelerations and such sort of things.

Reply to  mcswelll
March 31, 2021 2:09 am

If you add all the sciencery together, Big Bang, expanding universe, dark mutterings, redshifted stars, especially the accelerating expansion, then you cannot have things flying towards us, and we are at the centre of creation. Isotropist are adamant that “the further the star, the redder” to prove their model. Accelerating away from a big bang does not allow for last-minute bathroom visits, regardless of collisions etc.If Andromeda (or whatever number you give it today) is coming towards
us, then redshift does not prove acceleration, and so on and so on.

I really do not think any of this influences the price of eggs, I just think astronomers should familiarise themselves with terms like “maybe, could, if that’s the case…” instead of “this picture (dis)proves cosmic bacon grease”. Especially “the maths prove XYZ”. No, it may suggest, support or express a theory, just like in climate models…but it’s just theory.
And the next idjit that presents me with a computer graphic, telling me it’s a photo, I’ll, I’ll, …what’s the use, I can’t get to you, my covidiot passport got into the wash.

Reply to  paranoid goy
March 31, 2021 11:30 am

Thought experiment for you. If I throw a rock up in the air, and it comes back to me, would that disprove the expansion of the universe? Of course not. While the Andromeda galaxy is a few million light years away from us, its motion towards us does not disprove the universe’s extension either, rather it shows what you’d expect due to the gravitational attraction between two large groups of stars.

Gravitational attraction falls as the square of the distance. I’m not sure, but I suspect the speed of the universe’s expansion falls linearly with distance (as it must if the expansion is measured in meters/ meter / second, assuming the universe is “flat”). Thus gravity wins at (cosmologically) short distances, while expansion wins at long distances.

So yes, last minute bathroom visits, so long as the bathroom is nearby. But if it’s billions of light years away, you’re out of luck.

Reply to  mcswelll
March 31, 2021 1:50 pm

I’m not sure, but I suspect the speed of the universe’s expansion falls linearly with distance

Nope, the Dark Mutterers insist the expansion is accellerating. As I said, ‘when you add all the muttering up’.

Jim Masterson
Reply to  mcswelll
March 31, 2021 6:04 pm

You’re wasting your time mcswelll. I think paranoid and Vuk are playing us. They are intentionally ignoring our comments and being thick. Vuk’s comments don’t even have a train of thought–except for his (or her) last reply to me. I guess having a nonsense reply annoys him (or her).


March 30, 2021 9:55 am

I’d like my stellar eggs over-easy with a side of intergalactic bacon, please. 🙂

March 30, 2021 10:30 am

The funny thing is that our times are overshadowed by an ever increasing suppression of open discussion and point of origin is astronomy?
Why is it possible that we do not have an open discussion about the observation in astronomy? Why can‘t we discuss the merits of introducing electromagnetic forces (electric universe) instead of an universe which is only controlled by gravity and magnetic forces? Why is that suppressed by the academic establishment?
Is I possible that fusion energy doesn‘t achieve a breakthrough because we have some flaws in our theory?
And has this religious like behavior in part of science spilled over into society with it suppression of open discourse about global warming, COVID-19, election process, China, Russia etc?
I always keep thinking about the word of Max Planck: “Science advances one funeral after another”. Seems times haven’t changed that much.

Bill Powers
March 30, 2021 10:37 am

The most salient point of the article is “Previous studies had suggested that the environment there is too harsh to form stars” observations lead scientists to form hypotheses.

Hypotheticals when handed over to bureaucrats become dangerous hobgoblins to control the populous. Understand always that government strives for control. Try doubting that in the face of the ‘Rona lockdowns.

One day our great grandchildren will learn that previous studies had erroneously suggested that CO2 caused global warming.

March 30, 2021 6:29 pm

Can’t this be photographed with amateur scopes in M42, the Orion Nebula?

March 30, 2021 9:19 pm

Does this mean they don’t have to be put on the endangered species list?

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