Planets are formed from worms

16.07.2004

16.07.2004


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Apparently, astronomers will have to revise the generally accepted views on the mechanism of the formation of planets. As shown by new experiments to microgravity, the basis for the emergence of the planets are not loose dust clouds — and elongated dust worms. A study conducted at the Technical University of Braunschweig, sheds light on how the planets formed from dust clouds, when electrostatic forces dominate the gravity.

Jorgen Bloom and Maya Krause came to this conclusion on the basis of the on-board unmanned rocket experiments — this unit is spent in a state of microgravity for six minutes. The experiment showed that the dust flakes grow into long strips, and not just lumps, as previously thought.

Framework for the process of planet formation are studied well enough. Flakes dust clouds around newborn stars are moving randomly, sometimes colliding and boat ramp under the influence of electrostatic forces. Gravity Star collects larger pieces into a flat disk around which these particles continue to encounter. When they reach the size of boulders already own gravity objects helps them gather over substance and grow to the size of the planets. Details of the initial electrostatic interactions known much worse. New research has shown that formed a chain of several hundred dust particles, faster and faster growing with time. These chains with few branches can be produced because dust rising slowly rotating in the space. This increases the likelihood that the particles collide with the new end of a chain, not the middle portion.

A six-minute experiment in space has allowed to reproduce what happens around a young star for the year. In the larger molecular clouds where stars form themselves, these processes can take up to a million years.

15.07.2004

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