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Unformatted text preview: Protostar As a gas clump collapses it heats up because the gas particles run into each other. The energy the gas particles had from falling under the force of gravity gets converted to heat energy. The gas clump becomes warm enough to produce a lot of infrared and microwave radiation. At this stage the warm clump is called a protostar . The gas clump forms a disk with the protostar in the center. Other material in the disk may coalesce to form another star or planets. A protostar will reach a temperature of 2000 to 3000 K, hot enough to glow a dull red with most of its energy in the infrared. The cocoon of gas and dust surrounding them blocks the visible light. The surrounding dust warms up enough to produce copious amounts of infrared and the cooler dust further out glows with microwave energy. This longer wavelength electromagnetic radiation can pass through the dust. The infrared telescopes are able to observe the protostars themselves and their cocoons in dust clouds in our galaxy while the microwave telescopes probe...
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This note was uploaded on 12/15/2011 for the course AST AST1002 taught by Professor Emilyhoward during the Fall '10 term at Broward College.
- Fall '10