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Astrophile: Rhythmic dance helps star lovers mature

作者:鞠觥哇    发布时间:2017-08-26 07:00:21    

STELLAR couples known as binaries could be even better for life than lone stars like our sun. Young stars start out with volatile temperaments, which is bad news for nearby planets. The stars’ fast rotation rates boost their magnetic field strength, causing them to spit out harmful radiation and strong stellar winds that can strip away some planets’ life-friendly traits. Stars naturally slow their rotation as they age, reducing their activity. Now Paul Mason of the University of Texas at El Paso and colleagues say that binaries can settle down even earlier if their gravitational tango helps them synchronise rotation rates. The team applied their idea to models of six known binary systems and found that some are in synch as predicted (arxiv.org/abs/1307.4624). The effect should allow more habitable planets to prosper around binaries. This article appeared in print under the headline “Stars with rhythm make better hosts” More on these topics:

 

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