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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Cold bed in the Sun


Observations with the infrared Herschel Space Telescope discovered the star Alpha Centauri A strange "cold bed", exactly the same as that of our sun.

Our star is composed of six layers: the core, where fusion reactions occur, areas of radioactive transfer, convective zone, photosphere, chromospheres and corona. 

The temperature in the center of the nucleus - 14 million K, while at the surface (at the outer edge of the convection zone) and the temperature of the photosphere is only between 4-7 thousand K but the temperature of the chromospheres increases with altitude from 4000 to 20,000 K, and the temperature of the corona is an average of 1-2 million K, and in some areas up to 8 or even 20 million K.

Such a high temperature of the corona, astronomers tend to explain the influence of magnetic fields, which, in particular, produce coronal mass ejections and solar flares.

Observations of Alpha Centauri A are thought to help to better understand this phenomenon. The fact that the star is in fact a twin of the Sun: the size, mass, chemical composition, and even the age of these stars are very similar to each other, although in contrast to the Sun - Single Star - Alpha Centauri A is a triple star system.

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