‘Ram pressure can make stars’: Nasa captures Virgo Galaxy cluster

Mar18,2024



New Delhi: National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Astronomers using NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has captured a stunning image of LEDA 42160A GALAXY Located about 52 million light years away in the constellation Virgo.
This dwarf galaxy, among many other galaxies, navigates through the dense gas within the giant virgo zodiac group experiencing the deep effects of galaxies ram pressure,
“A dwarf galaxy in the constellation Coma Berenices, located 54 million light-years away, is undergoing a highly energetic event, captured here by NASA Hubble. The small galaxy is undergoing a process called RAM pressure stripping that is driving unusually high levels star formation in areas of the galaxy,” NASA said in a social media post.
Describing the image in a social media post, NASA said, “A dwarf spiral galaxy. The center is not particularly bright and is somewhat covered with dust, while the outer disk and halo are draped as if moving in water. Across the galaxy's mouth, an arc of brightly shining spots marks areas where new stars are forming. The Milky Way is surrounded by smaller, distant galaxies on a dark background.

What is 'Ram pressure'

Ram pressure, the resistance exerted by intergalactic gas and dust as a galaxy rotates, plays an important role in shaping the fate of these celestial bodies. This can strip a galaxy of its star-forming materials, hindering the formation of new stars. Conversely, RAM pressure may compress gas within the galaxy, potentially increasing star formation.
Describing ram pressure, NASA said, “Pressure can make diamonds, but ram pressure can make stars!”
Additionally, NASA said, “The gas and dust present in space exert pressure on galaxies. This resistance, called RAM pressure, can strip star-forming gas and dust from a galaxy, or limit the formation of new stars. However, RAM pressure may also compress gas in other parts of the galaxy, promoting star formation. In this case, there appears to be no star formation at the edges of the galaxy, which bear the brunt of the removal of RAM pressure, but the rate of star formation within the galaxy is increasing rapidly!

study of galaxy star formation

The data collected by the Hubble Space Telescope for this image of LEDA 42160 is part of a broader project studying dwarf galaxies undergoing RAM pressure stripping within larger galaxy clusters such as the Virgo Cluster. Previous studies have shown that RAM pressure stripping initially triggers the formation of new stars in larger galaxies. The researchers now want to determine whether this phenomenon applies to smaller galaxies like LEDA 42160.
Visible as bright patches on the lower-right side of LEDA 42160, these regions may indicate active star-forming regions induced by RAM pressure stripping. By analyzing Hubble's observations of LEDA 42160, astronomers aim to uncover the complex processes that have shaped the features observed within this compact galaxy.



Related Post

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *