Tuesday, January 04, 2005

Planetary Nebula

Imagine what will happen to our Sun in 5 billion years.Something close to this
http://www.astro.washington.edu/balick/WFPC2/catseye.jpeg

Above is the image of a Cats Eye nebula. Its what we call as planetary nebula. This stellar gas formation and also the formation of supernova is what we call as the remnants of a dying star. Our Sun will also go through this kind of phase during which its temperature will increase nearly thousand times what we have right now (Red Giant) is what the term is and finally in after 10000 years of that phase will become a white dwarf with no fuel left for fission. It will be hot though.
Cats Eye Nebula is a remant of such a star which formed nearly a 1000 years ago. This nebula is nearly 3000 light years away and its the most complex and most beautiful planetary nebula out there. Its a hot topic of research because of its complex structure. Read about it here
http://www.astro.washington.edu/balick/WFPC2/

http://stardate.org/resources/gallery/gallery_detail.php?id=2

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