Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?
Space Science

Dying Star Weaves a Trillion-Mile-Wide Spiral In the Sky 46

The Bad Astronomer writes "Using the newly-commissioned ALMA radio observatory, astronomers have taken detailed images of one of the most amazing objects in the sky: the red giant R Sculptoris (abstract). As the star dies, it undergoes gigantic seizures beneath its surface that blast out waves of gas and dust from the surface. These normally expand into a spherical shell, but the presence of a nearby companion star changes things. The combined orbits of the two stars fling out the material like a garden sprinkler, forming enormous and incredibly beautiful spiral arms. Measuring the size and shape of the spiral shows the last eruption was 1800 years ago, lasted for nearly two centuries, and expelled enough material to make a thousand earths."
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Dying Star Weaves a Trillion-Mile-Wide Spiral In the Sky

Comments Filter:
  • :P (Score:5, Funny)

    by CosaNostra Pizza Inc ( 1299163 ) on Wednesday October 10, 2012 @03:23PM (#41611293)
    That's nothing. I could do that as a kid with Spirograph. :P
  • by TheSkepticalOptimist ( 898384 ) on Wednesday October 10, 2012 @04:49PM (#41612397)

    So the metric system is based on science, while the Imperial system is based on the crap someone could find in their near vicinity to measure with, like the nearest stone, hand, foot, or how long their horse could ride before working up a sweat. I would suggest then the modern Imperial measurement system is based on American football field lengths, amount of concrete in a sidewalk between New York and Chicago, Phelps sized swimming pools, and how far their Hemi V8 engine can drive before requiring a tank-up. You know, the stuff God gave us to measure with instead of some bullshit sciencey mumbo-jumbo.

"We don't care. We don't have to. We're the Phone Company."