Hubble spots star cluster that sparkles in the sky like diamonds

It's also the youngest star cluster in the Carina Nebula at just 500,000 years old.

Alex Bourque | Feb 08, 2016

   

The Hubble Space Telescope has spotted what has been described as "dazzling diamonds" in the sky.

In reality, it's a cluster of young and very hot stars called the Trumpler 14 star cluster, and it hosts some of the most luminous stars in the entire galaxy. Because they are so hot and are clumped so tightly together, they look like incredibly bright sparkling diamonds, according to a Christian Science Monitor report.

It's also the youngest star cluster in the Carina Nebula at just 500,000 years old. The pheiades cluster, which is in the Taurus constellation, is 115 million years old by comparison.

These stars will probably burn out quickly -- perhaps in just a few million years. Their luminosity is so great that they will likely burn through their hydrogen fuel much quicker than most stars, which will be followed by an incredible supernova. The sun, by comparison, is expected to last for billions of years.

The star cluster is about 8,000 light-years from the center of the Carina Nebula within our glaaxy. The cluster probably has about 2,000 stars. Star HD 93129Aa in particular stands out and is one of the brightest stars in the whole galaxy.

The arc-shaped cloud visible at the bottom of one image of the cluster could be the result of wind, or bow shock created by nearby star Trumpler 14MJ218, which is believed to be moving at a speed of 350,000 kilometers per hour.

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