Protoplanetary disc around Orion

Protoplanetary disc around Orion

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This image is part of the feature Infinite Worlds

Credit: LYNETTE COOK/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Restrictions: NOT FOR USE IN POPULAR ASTRONOMY AND RELATED BOOKS FOR ADULTS

Caption: Protoplanetary disc around Orion, artwork. Embryonic stars in the Orion Nebula are surrounded by protoplanetary discs of dust. The star at the centre of each disc emits a huge quantity of ultraviolet radiation. This heats the inner discs causing molecules to evaporate off the surface resulting in a vast 'jet' of evaporating gas. The gas eventually forms a visible cocoon around the entire disc. The dust grains that remain within the protoplanetary discs may one day fall together to form planets. The Orion nebula lies 1500 light years away in the constellation Orion.

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Keywords: alien, alien planet, alien planetary system, alien world, artwork, astronomical, astronomy, astrophysical, astrophysics, cosmology, disc, dust, ejecting, embryonic star, exoplanet, extraterrestrial, gas, glow, illustration, milky way, orion nebula, planet formation, planet-forming, proplyd, protoplanetary disc, radiation, science, space, space art, star, starbirth, stellar evolution, stellar nursery

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