Cosmic Fountain of Crystal Rain

Spitzer_ssc2011-06c_1024

spitzer_ssc2011-06c May 26th, 2011

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle (SSC)

NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope detected tiny green crystals, called olivine, thought to be raining down on a developing star. This graphic illustrates the process, beginning with a picture of the star and ending with an artist's concept of what the crystal "rain" might look like.

The top picture was taken in infrared light by NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope. An arrow points to the embryonic star, called HOPS-68. The middle panel illustrates how the olivine crystals are suspected to have been transported into the outer cloud around the developing star, or protostar. Jets shooting away from the protostar, where temperatures are hot enough to cook the crystals, are thought to have transported them to the outer cloud, where temperatures are much colder. Astronomers say the crystals are raining back down onto the swirling disk of planet-forming dust circling the star, as depicted in the final panel.

Provider: Spitzer Space Telescope

Image Source: https://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/image/ssc2011-06c-cosmic-fountain-of-crystal-rain

Curator: Spitzer Space Telescope, Pasadena, CA, USA

Image Use Policy: Public Domain

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Image Details

Image Type
Artwork
Object Name
HOPS 68 Orion
Subject - Milky Way
Star > Evolutionary Stage > Protostar
Star > Circumstellar Material > Disk > Protoplanetary
Nebula > Type > Jet

Distance

Universescale1
1,450 light years
Spitzer_ssc2011-06c_1280
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ID
ssc2011-06c
Subject Category
B.3.1.1.   B.3.7.2.1.   B.4.1.5.  
Subject Name
HOPS 68, Orion
Credits
NASA/JPL-Caltech/T. Pyle (SSC)
Release Date
2011-05-26
Lightyears
1,450
Redshift
1,450
Reference Url
https://www.spitzer.caltech.edu/image/ssc2011-06c-cosmic-fountain-of-crystal-rain
Type
Artwork
Image Quality
Good
Distance Notes
Facility
Instrument
Color Assignment
Band
Bandpass
Central Wavelength
Start Time
Integration Time
Dataset ID
Notes
Coordinate Frame
Equinox
Reference Value
Reference Dimension
Reference Pixel
Scale
Rotation
Coordinate System Projection:
Quality
FITS Header
Notes
Creator (Curator)
Spitzer Space Telescope
URL
http://www.spitzer.caltech.edu
Name
Email
Telephone
Address
1200 E. California Blvd.
City
Pasadena
State/Province
CA
Postal Code
91125
Country
USA
Rights
Public Domain
Publisher
Spitzer Science Center
Publisher ID
spitzer
Resource ID
ssc2011-06c.tif
Metadata Date
2021-08-04T07:32:06Z
Metadata Version
1.2
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Detailed color mapping information coming soon...

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Universescalefull
1,450 light years