Burning star


Saransh Sharma

| Artist

Shantaram Kadam

| Copyright

Muellners Foundation

Stars are born out of the gravitational collapse of cool, dense molecular clouds. As the cloud collapses, it fragments into smaller regions, which themselves contract to form stellar cores. These protostars rotate faster and increase in temperature as they condense, and are surrounded by a protoplanetary disk out of which planets may later form.

The central temperature of the contracting protostar increases to the point where nuclear reactions begin. At this point, hydrogen is converted into helium in the core and the star is born onto the main sequence. For about 90% of its life, the star will continue to burn hydrogen into helium and will remain a main sequence star.