Washington D.C. : Unveiling the turbulent past of our sun, a team of researchers has shown ‘cannibalism’ between stars. Stars are born inside a rotating cloud of interstellar gas and dust, which contracts to stellar densities thanks to its own gravity.
Before finding itself on the star, however, most of the cloud lands onto a circumstellar disk forming around the star owing to conservation of angular momentum. The manner in which the material is transported through the disk onto the star, causing the star to grow in mass, has recently become a major research topic in astrophysics, reports ANI.
According to their theory, stellar brightening can be caused by fragmentation due to gravitational instabilities in massive gaseous disks surrounding young stars, followed by migration of dense gaseous clumps onto the star. During each episode, the star is consuming the equivalent of one Earth mass every ten days. After this, it may take another several thousand years before another event occurs.
Vorobyov describes the process of clump formation in circumstellar disks followed by their migration onto the star as “cannibalism on astronomical scales.