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HubbleSite Hubble Movies Provide Unprecedented View of Supersonic Jets from Young Stars

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Space Telescope Science

A team of scientists has collected enough high-resolution Hubble Space Telescope images over a 14-year period to stitch together time-lapse movies of powerful jets ejected from three young stars.

The jets, a byproduct of gas accretion around newly forming stars, shoot off at supersonic speeds in opposite directions through space. These phenomena are providing clues about the final stages of a star's birth, offering a peek at how our Sun came into existence 4.5 billion years ago. Hubble's unprecedented sharpness allows astronomers to see changes in the jets over just a few years' time. Most astronomical processes change over timescales that are much longer than a human lifetime.

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