Hubble finds multiple stellar “baby booms” in a globular cluster:
Analysis of Hubble observations of the massive globular cluster NGC 2808 provides evidence that it has three generations of stars that formed early in the cluster’s life. This is a major upset for conventional theories as astronomers have long thought that globular star clusters had a single “baby boom” of stars early in their lives and then settled down into a long, quiet middle age.
NGC 2808 :: Credits: European Space Agency, NASA, G. Piotto (University of Padua, Italy) and A. Sarajedini (University of Florida, USA). Acknowledgement: Davide de Martin (ESA/Hubble)
ESO Press Release:
“Star Family Seen Through Dusty Fog”
Images made with ESO’s New Technology Telescope at La Silla by a team of German astronomers reveal a rich circular cluster of stars in the inner parts of our Galaxy. Located 30,000 light-years away, this previously unknown closely-packed group of about 100,000 stars is most likely a new globular cluster.
“NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has provided astronomers with the best observational evidence to date that globular clusters sort out stars according to their mass, governed by a gravitational billiard ball game between stars. Heavier stars slow down and sink to the cluster’s core, while lighter stars pick up speed and move across the cluster to its periphery. This process, called “mass segregation,” has long been suspected for globular star clusters, but has never before been directly seen in action. “
HubbleSite – Hubble Yields Direct Proof of Stellar Sorting in a Globular Cluster