​Trumpler 14 Hubble Telescope Discovery Reveals Dazzling Space of Sparkling Diamonds

Trumpler 14 Hubble
Author: Michael StevensBy:
Staff Reporter
Jan. 26, 2016

Trumpler 14’s Hubble Telescope discovery has revealed a dazzling cluster of cosmic jewelry. Hubble located the star cluster nearly 8,000 light-years away and includes some of the brightest concentrations of stars in the Milky Way, according to The Christian Science Monitor.

Hubble also found that one of its stars, HD 93129Aa, is estimated to be 80 times as massive as the sun, and about a half million times brighter. While Trumpler 14 looks impressive its stellar beauty won’t last much longer.

Trumpler 14 Hubble discovery reveals dazzling diamonds

Trumpler 14 Hubble discovery reveals dazzling diamonds

NASA scientists say these stars, which are relatively young at 500,000 years old, are burning so brightly that it won’t be long-about 2 million years-before they explode as supernova. Nothing gold can stay, as they say.

Astronomers estimate there exists around 2,000 stars in Trumpler 14’s Hubble eye, with new ones forming all the time. As these stars form, they fling high-speed particles into space, spewing strong winds. In the process, the cluster’s available hydrogen supplies gets depleted, which will eventually lead to their demise.

Around 1100 open clusters have so far been discovered within the Milky Way, although many more are thought to exist. Trumpler 14 is one of these, located some 8000 light-years away towards the center of the well-known Carina Nebula.

At a mere 500 000 years old — a small fraction of the Pleiades open cluster’s age of 115 million years — Trumpler 14 is not only one of the most populous clusters within the Carina Nebula, but also the youngest. However, it is fast making up for lost time, forming stars at an incredible rate and putting on a stunning visual display.

This region of space houses one of the highest concentrations of massive, luminous stars in the entire Milky Way — a spectacular family of young, bright, white-blue stars. These stars are rapidly working their way through their vast supplies of hydrogen, and have only a few million years of life left before they meet a dramatic demise and explode as supernovae. In the meantime, despite their youth, these stars are making a huge impact on their environment.

As the stars fling out high-speed particles from their surfaces, strong winds surge out into space. These winds collide with the surrounding material, causing shock waves that heat the gas to millions of degrees and trigger intense bursts of X-rays. These strong stellar winds also carve out cavities in nearby clouds of gas and dust, and kickstart the formation of new stars.

Milky Way Galaxy

The peculiar arc-shaped cloud visible at the very bottom of this image is suspected to be the result of such a wind. This feature is thought to be a bow shock created by the wind flowing from the nearby star Trumpler 14 MJ 218. Astronomers have observed this star to be moving through space at some 217,480 miles per hour, sculpting the surrounding clumps of gas and dust as it does so.

The Trumpler 14 Hubble discovery is exciting to the science community. Astronomers already estimate that around 2000 stars reside within the cluster, and Trumpler 14 is one of the most brilliant and hottest stars in our entire galaxy.

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