AAO image reference AAT 88. « Previous || Next »
Top left is NE. Image width is about 9 arc min
Image and text © 1991-2010, Australian Astronomical Observatory, photograph by David Malin.
Many stars lose a substantial part of their mass as they age. The more massive the star, the greater the fraction of their substance is lost. Much material is ejected by intense stellar winds driven from the surface of extremely hot stars and the mass loss is often only detectable in the stellar spectrum. In cooler stars temperatures may be low enough for elements or simple compounds to form solid grains in the star's outer atmosphere. This is seen as dust, and sometimes there is enough to reflect the light of the star within. As is often the case with stellar outflows, the IC 2220 reflection nebula is bipolar, hinting at conditions near the surface of the central star.
AAT 24. A mass-loss star in IC 2220
Constellation of Carina (external site)
For details of photographic exposure, search technical table by AAT reference number.
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