NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Red dwarf. Infrared image of the red dwarf Proxima Centauri (centre left). Explosive outbursts (flares) occur almost continually in the star's upper atmosphere. These flares are caused by the star's low mass, which is a tenth that of the Sun's. Nuclear fusion reactions that convert hydrogen to helium proceed very slowly in Proxima Centauri, creating a turbulent, convective motion throughout the star's interior. This motion stores up magnetic energy, which is then released explosively. Image taken as part of the Digitized Sky Survey.
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