In a premiere survey of this kind, an international team consisting of over fifty astronomers identified over 100,000 spots where stars were born across 90 galaxies from the universe.
The so-called star nurseries are regions of space where the stars are born.
Experts explained that nurseries can produce thousands of new stars during their lifetime, so the fact that researchers managed to map more than 100,000 such nurseries is terrific news!
The maps will help the researchers to backtrack stars back to their origin to better understand their formation process, apart from obtaining a broader understanding of each star.
Stellar nurseries are gas-dense areas of space that present perfect conditions for stars to form.
Basically, they are very dense and cold gaseous clouds that get compressed by forces of gravity, present in numerous quantity in space, until nuclear fusion begins, the fundamental process that sustains the life of a star.
However, the previously mentioned process can take up to a few million years.
Until recently, scientists thought that all stellar nurseries were alike – a consensus that got busted thanks to the new study.
“We used to think that all stellar nurseries across every galaxy must look more or less the same, but this survey has revealed that this is not the case, and stellar nurseries change from place to place,” said Adam Leroy, an associate professor of astronomy from the Ohio State University in the U.S., who conducted the study.
He also explained that the nurseries take part in building galaxies and forming planets, and they are just a fundamental part in the story of how the universe got to this stage.