First stars in the universe weren’t as lonely as previously thought

February 4th, 2011 - 2:25 pm ICT by ANI  

Washington, Feb 4 (ANI): Researchers from the Center of Astronomy at Heidelberg University, the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Garching, and The University of Texas at Austin have found that the first stars to form in the universe were not as lonely as previously believed.

The astrophysicists used state-of-the-art computer simulations to model the birth of the first stars to form after the Big Bang.

The group, led by Dr. Paul Clark in Heidelberg and including Dr. Volker Bromm of The University of Texas at Austin, demonstrated that the disk that surrounds primordial stars during their infancy can break up to form companion stars.

These findings challenge the previously held wisdom that primordial stars formed in complete isolation, rather than in groups typical for stars in our Milky Way Galaxy.

“This simulation pushes our decade-long quest to understand the f formation of the first stars one crucial step ahead,” Bromm said.

“Utilizing cutting-edge supercomputer technology, such as the RANGER system at the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC), we now know that the first stars typically did not form alone,” Bromm added.

These results are being published today in Science magazine. (ANI)

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