Stellar life cycles

Although stars are found in huge variety, nearly all can be seen as stages in a standard model of stellar evolution. In this model, a star's mass governs the nuclear reactions in its core, which in turn determine its other physical properties, its life span, and its eventual fate.

the birth of a star

New stars are created by the collapse of vast clouds of gas and dust within galaxies. Such collapses are frequent— they can be triggered by the gravity of nearby stars, the shock waves from a supernova explosion, or simply the slow, regular rotation of a spiral galaxy. Depending on the size of the cloud and other factors, stars can be born in large

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