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Life and death of stars

  1. Jul 10, 2010 #1
    can anyone tell me about various stages of life of a star? when does a neutron star, supernova, pulsar form?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 10, 2010 #2
    Different sized stars come to different ends, all the stages you have mentioned (neutron star, supernova, pulsar form) happen at the end of a stars life. Neutron stars and Pulsars usually happen in stars between 1.35-2.1 solar masses (mass of the sun) and supernova's 1.4+ solar masses.

    Heres a good website about the life cycle of a star: http://aspire.cosmic-ray.org/labs/star_life/starlife_main.html [Broken]

    Hope this helps :)

    Last edited by a moderator: May 4, 2017
  4. Jul 12, 2010 #3
    In stars above 8 solar masses a star can cause it's core material to undergo nuclear fusion all the way to iron & nickel. Once they form in sufficient amounts the core becomes unstable because they require more energy to make than they produce by fusion. The core collapses into a super-dense state - neutronium - and an immense amount of gravitational energy is released in a massive burst of neutrinos and a tiny fraction of their energy causes the outer layers of the star to explode into space. That's the supernova, while the neutronium core is a neutron star. A pulsar is a neutron star which is losing it's rotational energy as beams of electromagnetic energy. Some pulsars can be sped up by accreting mass from a nearby star and become what's known as millisecond pulsars.

    Lower mass stars don't form supernova. Instead they form red giant stars which blow away most of their mass into space, leaving behind a white dwarf star.
  5. Jul 13, 2010 #4
    the riddler mentioned the best ever sites with all information and also interactive quizzes. thank you! but there is no information about pulsar. and for pulsar qraal just did what i had expected. thanks to you too! wow now i won't be confused in this part, at least. and again the quizzes on the sites were very good. :cool:
  6. Jul 14, 2010 #5
    You're welcome :-)

    Any more questions, just ask away. Most of us are pretty friendly around here.
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