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The Life Cycle of a "Medium" Sized Star

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Lilly Harbison

on 15 October 2014

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Transcript of The Life Cycle of a "Medium" Sized Star

Stage 1: Nebula
The Life Cycle of a "Medium" Sized Star
Stage 4: Red Super Giant
Stage 5: Supernova
Stage 2: Protostar
Stage 3: Star
This is where any star's life cycle begins.
This massive cloud of interstellar gas and dust is called a nebula, and they are found all over the Universe.
Nebulae are usually made of gas, dust, hydrogen, helium, and other ionized gases.
Nebulae also vary in size, and can be up to hundreds of lightyears across in diameter.
Nebulae are usually formed by...
The gravitational collapse of gases in the Interstellar Medium (ISM)
i.e. The Rosette Nebula
Supernova explosions
i.e. The Crab Nebula
Stage 6: Neutron Star
Once a star is formed in a nebula, how much mass it gathers determines how large it will be.

The stars featured here are about 1.5 to 3 times bigger than our own Sun is.
The temperatures also
vary depending upon the
size of the star. 'Medium'
sized stars can have a
surface temperature of 100,000°F.
This is the early stage in star
development where the all of the
mass gathered in the nebula begin to
take shape into a star.

This stage in the stars life lasts for
about 10 million years, but no 2 stars
are exactly the same, so it varies.
This is around the time that a star
reaches equilibrium within itself and begins
to fuse hydrogen atoms into helium atoms
and release energy.
A star remains in the stage for about
10 billion years, or until it runs out of hydrogen to convert into helium.
After spending time in its main sequence,
the star begins to run out of hydrogen to fuse, leaving it with a helium core and other gases which cause it to cool and expand.
After a few million years, nuclear
reactions begin to occur,
which form many different elements
around the iron core in shells.

The Red Super Giant's
core then collapses in a
time frame of less than
a second. This
causes an explosion
called a Supernova,
which releases the outer
layers of the star.
This explosion can
be brighter
than the galaxy
the star is in.
The temperatures of a
supernova, at its peak,
can reach up to 10 billion
degrees farenheit.
After the supernova, all that remains is the core of the star, which is now known as a
Neutron star.
They have an average radius of 10 km (6 miles), yet have a mass of a few times our own Sun's.
To put this into perspective, 1 teaspoon of neutron star would weigh about 10 million tons.
Full transcript