The earth is a glass of ancient stars "relics"

In December 2018 06, 09:05 source: Science Daily

When you look at the glass or walk on the beach, will associate these materials with the death of stars?

Recently, an international team of scientists said they have found that the main components include glass two supernova remnants from the Earth billions of light-years in silica. The researchers used NASA's Spitzer space telescope to analyze the dying star light emitted from the silica "fingerprint".

All the heavy elements in the universe furnace

"This is the first time we proved that supernova generated silica enough to affect the entire universe in the dust." Cardiff University physics and astronomy Institute Hayley Gomez (Haley Gomez) said.

In fact, most of the earth's natural elements and the supernova explosion process. Why is this the first time that silicon supernova produced enough to become the source of cosmic dust of silicon? The National Astronomical Observatory Chinese science researcher Deng Licai told Technology Daily reporter: "in theory, scientists have long known that a supernova can produce silicon, and this research breakthrough is mainly in the observation level were confirmed."

"The stars are all heavy elements in the universe furnace." Deng Licai explained that the main component of the big bang at the early stage of hydrogen and helium, hydrogen and helium accounted for about 80%, accounting for about 20%. In the stellar evolution, the first hydrogen combustion, hydrogen combustion after re ignite helium, helium burning will produce carbon and oxygen. "Carbon oxygen combustion process will produce silicon, calcium, magnesium and other elements, these elements will burn, but require a higher temperature."

The temperature distribution has the burning mechanism with the star, the central star the highest temperature. "Like an onion, a layer of combustion, it can ensure the balance of the internal structure of stars." Deng Licai told reporters.

In the "onion", the two layer and silicon elements. A layer of silicon is its combustion, combustion is a layer of silicon. Deng Li said: "if the two combustion process in a supernova before the outbreak has not yet ended, silicon which will be thrown into the universe in a supernova."

In addition to hydrogen and helium, oxygen is also very active, encountered after the formation of silicon, silicon dioxide. The silica is the main component of the manufacture of glass and the formation of dust. If you encounter a suitable condition, the dust will cool together, slowly getting bigger, finally turned into a second generation of stars or planets such as the earth. "In the universe, this process is very common." Deng Licai said. About 60% silica crust. To some extent, silica on earth is the "relics of ancient stars".

In observation gradually to verify theoretical predictions

The silicon element formed in the stellar evolution, theoretical explanation of this view is relatively mature, but it is difficult to observe. "Because the observations, need the stars are massive stars, the quality is at least 8 times the mass of the sun, even more than 100 solar masses."

A massive star late element synthesis to iron, through the internal thermonuclear reaction will no longer produce new energy, make the stars immense gravity center quickly to collapse. An outcome is the center of material is pressed into the neutron state, a neutron star, the core quality of greater or even collapse into a black hole.

Massive stars are for the outbreak of type II supernovae end their life. Deng Licai told reporters, in general, the massive star supernova explosion would have most or all ejections into space, eventually leaving a neutron star or a black hole, the initial quality and physical state depending on the stars.

However, few massive stars in the universe. "Most of the stars in the universe for the outbreak of type Ia supernova, which is the predecessor of low mass stars in binaries, because of low mass stars in the formation of massive stars than high proportion. In a supernova explosion, low mass stars (such as a binary star system) with out massive stars are not the same material. This will bring difficulty to the birth of observation of si." Deng Li said.

In fact, this is just like the detection of dark matter. Deng Li said: "the theoretical point of view, there is dark matter in the universe, but we are unable to detect. Perhaps the interaction of dark matter emit radiation, scientists used to detect dark matter by radiation detection theory."

So is the observation of silicon. "In theory, through the evolution of stars can predict the generation of silicon can even predict silicon production. This study observed the silicon element in the supernova remnant, is to prove the previous theories." Deng Licai told reporters, there are many uncertainties in the universe, through observation can be found, can also eliminate some hypothesis.

Note that the stellar explosion does not directly produce glass, but the manufacture of glass material. "When we walk along the sidewalk or on the beach, interactions are made in combustion and millions of years before the explosion of stellar material." Hayley Gomez said. (on behalf of van Persie)

(commissioning editor: Song Xiaoxuan (Intern), Xiong Xu)

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