Stellar bow shock

Stellar bow shock

Fig. 15.9 . A crescent-shaped bow shock is formed when the material in the fast wind from the bright, very young star, LL Ori (center) collides with the slow-moving gas in its vicinity, coming from the lower right. The stellar wind is a stream of charged particles moving rapidly outward from the star. It is a less energetic version of the solar wind that flows from the Sun. A second, fainter bow shock can be seen around a star near the upper right-hand corner of this image, taken from the Hubble Space Telescope. Both stars are located in the Orion Nebula; a bright star-forming region located about 1,500 light-years from the Earth. (Courtesy of NASA, the Hubble Heritage Team, STScI, and AURA.)

Copyright 2010, Professor Kenneth R. Lang, Tufts University