Binary stars

Copyright Robert Gendler and Josch Hambsch 2005
February 12, 2015
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Copyright Robert Gendler and Josch Hambsch 2005

Astronomers have identified 18 extreme mass-ratio binaries in a neighboring galaxy called the Large Magellanic Cloud, pictured here. The more massive stars weigh 6 to 16 times as much as the Sun, while the less massive stars weigh about 1 to 2 times the Sun. We've caught them "in the delivery room," since one star is fully formed while the other is still in its infancy. These systems represent a new class of binary stars.

Copyright Robert Gendler and Josch Hambsch 2005