A Stars Life Cycle

by: Aidan O'Bannion

Nebula

A nebula is a cloud in outer space that is made of dust, hydrogen, helium gas, and plasma. It is formed when portions of the interstellar medium collapse and combine due to gravity that pulls together the particles that make up a nebula.


Protostar

The protostar is formed when protons inside of the nebula crash together forming another proton. Eventually the star will be big enough to have its own gravitational pull.

Main Sequence

This happens once the star gets its own gravitational pull, and it pulls back in the energy it puts out. Main sequence stars are fusing hydrogen atoms to form helium atoms.

Red Giant

A red giant is an old star that is in its late stage. The star is at the point where there is no more hydrogen at its core so it can’t fuel the nuclear fusion.

White Dwarf

A white dwarf is a small very dense star that can be about the size of a planet. A star turn into a white dwarf from a red giant after there is no more nuclear fuel in its core.


Black Dwarf

A black dwarf is a white dwarf that has burned out all of its light and heat, and basically cools down to the temperature of the rest of space, and becomes invisible.