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Category: ASTRO DICTIONARY

Fliers (Fast Low-Ionization Emission Region)

Fliers (Fast Low-Ionization Emission Region)

Fliers (Fast Low-Ionization Emission Region) Definition Fliers are regions of gas with low ionization (atoms becoming electrically charged). Commonly seen in planetary nebulae, these regions of gas typically move much faster than other matter from the nebula. Typically, they travel at supersonic speeds, which indicates that they are very young.  

Nuclear Fusion

Nuclear Fusion

Nuclear fusion happens when two nuclei (center of an atom) are forced to combine with each other. Since nuclei try to prevent themselves from combining together, fusion only happens under extreme conditions or environments, like the inside of a star! This joining results in a heavier element being formed, and excess energy being released. Imagine two of the best football players from two opposing teams. If, for some reason, they were forced to join one team together, they may not…

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Baryonic Matter

Baryonic Matter

Baryonic matter is the “normal” matter that we are familiar with. It accounts for everything human life has ever observed, including planets, stars, galaxies, people and everything else. Baryonic matter only accounts for less than 5% of the universe’s total mass.

Gamma Ray Bursts

Gamma Ray Bursts

Gamma ray bursts are extremely powerful explosions of gamma ray energy from the far reaches of the universe. Astronomers are able to detect the bursts, but have yet to establish their causes or origins.

Gravitational Waves

Gravitational Waves

Gravitational waves are ripples or waves in the fabric of spacetime. Space is not empty, it is an invisible “fabric.” As objects move through this space fabric (i.e. stars or planets), they can affect it by causing waves. The more massive an object is, the more it affects and the bigger its waves are. Imagine dropping two beach balls into a pool of still water. If you drop a small beach ball into the pool, it causes small waves that…

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Baryonic

Baryonic

Baryonic means matter consisting of Baryons. Baryons are the particles that make up “normal” matter. Baryons include particles like protons and neutrons, which both account for 99.9% of the total atomic mass of all Baryonic matter.

Baryons

Baryons

Baryons are the particles that make up “normal” matter. Baryons include particles like protons and neutrons, which both account for 99.9% of the total atomic mass of all Baryonic matter.

Coronal Mass Ejection

Coronal Mass Ejection

A coronal mass ejection (CME) is an enormous burst of plasma and magnetic field lines ejected from the Sun during large solar flares. CMEs are often compared to a “burp” from the Sun. However, these “burps” carry the power of 20 million nuclear bombs, erupting billions of tons of hot plasma into space at over a million miles per hour.