A star is born: Telescope captures dramatic moment of starbirth

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — This is one baby picture you won’t want to miss.

The stunning images show material streaming from the baby star at incredible speed, glowing as it plows into the surrounding gas and dust. Astronomers say these illuminated jets are spewing out faster than ever measured before and are more energetic than previously thought.

The orange and green of the newborn star reveal a large energetic jet moving away from the Earth, which in the visible is hidden by dust and gas. In pink and purple, the visible part of the jet is seen streaming partly toward the Earth.

The glowing mass is called a Herbig-Haro object, named after U.S. and Mexican astronomers. This one is 1,400 light-years away in the constellation Vela.

ALMA actually consists of an array of 66 antennas and is relatively new. It’s located in one of the driest places on Earth, the Atacama desert.

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