White Dwarfs

OLIVIA JAHN

What is it?..

A White Dwarf is a compact star at the end of its life cycle. It is incredibly dense so that light cannot excape, you can see them throughout the whole universe. They are capable of becoming the size of earth and weigh as much as 300,000 earths.

This can only occur when two stars are close in contact. The White Dwarf is small and dense. It steals energy from the bigger star until they become too large, hot, and they explode, creating a supernova blast. Some White Dwarfs reach as big as 1.4 times the mass of the sun, at that size they have used up all of the nuclear energy and exhaust, becoming very unstable.


Black Holes, Neutron Stars, White Dwarfs, Space & Time

Characteristics

Over 50% of stars are in the binary system, including the White Dwarf. They collapse under gravity when there is no exhaust left. If located by a larger star it keeps growing as a La supernova, not fading away.

Sources;

1. Kirshner, R. P. (2013). In The Mysterious Universe (pp. 22-24, 26-27, 41, 58).

2. Angelo, Jr., A. A. (2007). Spacecraft for Astronomy. In Wrinkles in the Cosmic Microwave Background (pp. 204--205, 268).

Picture and Video Sources;

1. Essortment (Producer). Black Holes, Neutron Stars, White Dwarfs, Space & Time [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U_tnYDoubLI

2. Hubble Space Telescope, . Sirius A and B Hubble Photo. 2003. NASA. File: Sirius A and B Hubble Photo.jpg. Web. 20 Apr. 2013. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Sirius_A_and_B_Hubble_photo.jpg>.

3. Co-Adding, . Hot DA White Dwarf PG 1342+444. FUSE spectrum. Current Research. Web. 20 Apr. <http://www.star.le.ac.uk/wd/wd/current.shtml>.

A White Dwarf Star Compaired To Earth. 2013. BBC. Web. 20 Apr. 2013. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/gcsebitesize/science/edexcel_pre_2011/space/theoriginsoftheuniverserev3.shtml>.

4. Reed, Casey. The White Dwarf in the AE Aquarii System. NASA. Mission News. Web. 20 Apr. 2013. <http://www.nasa.gov/centers/goddard/news/topstory/2007/whitedwarf_pulsar.html>.