Stars

Definition

Stars are large balls of plasma, predominantly hydrogen and helium. The birth, evolution and death of stars are of particular research interest. Other important topics include understanding the internal processes, such as fusion, that generate great quantities of radiation and the gravitational interactions between stars.

Featured

Latest Research and Reviews

  • Research |

    The extremely bright GRB 160625B, consisting of three sub-bursts separated by quiescent intervals, shows a transition from thermal to non-thermal radiation that indicates a change of jet composition from a fireball to a Poynting-flux-dominated jet.

    • B.-B. Zhang
    • , B. Zhang
    • , A. J. Castro-Tirado
    • , Z. G. Dai
    • , P.-H. T. Tam
    • , X.-Y. Wang
    • , Y.-D. Hu
    • , S. Karpov
    • , A. Pozanenko
    • , F.-W. Zhang
    • , E. Mazaeva
    • , P. Minaev
    • , A. Volnova
    • , S. Oates
    • , H. Gao
    • , X.-F. Wu
    • , L. Shao
    • , Q.-W. Tang
    • , G. Beskin
    • , A. Biryukov
    • , S. Bondar
    • , E. Ivanov
    • , E. Katkova
    • , N. Orekhova
    • , A. Perkov
    • , V. Sasyuk
    • , L. Mankiewicz
    • , A. F. Żarnecki
    • , A. Cwiek
    • , R. Opiela
    • , A. Zadrożny
    • , R. Aptekar
    • , D. Frederiks
    • , D. Svinkin
    • , A. Kusakin
    • , R. Inasaridze
    • , O. Burhonov
    • , V. Rumyantsev
    • , E. Klunko
    • , A. Moskvitin
    • , T. Fatkhullin
    • , V. V. Sokolov
    • , A. F. Valeev
    • , S. Jeong
    • , I. H. Park
    • , M. D. Caballero-García
    • , R. Cunniffe
    • , J. C. Tello
    • , P. Ferrero
    • , S. B. Pandey
    • , M. Jelínek
    • , F. K. Peng
    • , R. Sánchez-Ramrez
    •  & A. Castellón
  • Research |

    The discovery of the most energetic transient event to date is reported. Its spectroscopic properties and temporal evolution imply it is powered by shock interaction between expanding material and large quantities of surrounding dense matter.

    • E. Kankare
    • , R. Kotak
    • , S. Mattila
    • , P. Lundqvist
    • , M. J. Ward
    • , M. Fraser
    • , A. Lawrence
    • , S. J. Smartt
    • , W. P. S. Meikle
    • , A. Bruce
    • , J. Harmanen
    • , S. J. Hutton
    • , C. Inserra
    • , T. Kangas
    • , A. Pastorello
    • , T. Reynolds
    • , C. Romero-Cañizales
    • , K. W. Smith
    • , S. Valenti
    • , K. C. Chambers
    • , K. W. Hodapp
    • , M. E. Huber
    • , N. Kaiser
    • , R.-P. Kudritzki
    • , E. A. Magnier
    • , J. L. Tonry
    • , R. J. Wainscoat
    •  & C. Waters
  • Research | | open

    Radio observations of the solar atmosphere provide a unique view on the non-thermal processes in the outer atmosphere. Here the authors use LOFAR observations to demonstrate that the observed radio burst characteristics are dominated by propagation effects rather than underlying emission variations.

    • E. P. Kontar
    • , S. Yu
    • , A. A. Kuznetsov
    • , A. G. Emslie
    • , B. Alcock
    • , N. L. S. Jeffrey
    • , V. N. Melnik
    • , N. H. Bian
    •  & P. Subramanian
  • Research |

    Observations of an event (several energetic eruptions leading to a terminal explosion that is surprisingly hydrogen-rich) with the spectrum of a supernova do not match with other observations of supernovae.

    • Iair Arcavi
    • , D. Andrew Howell
    • , Daniel Kasen
    • , Lars Bildsten
    • , Griffin Hosseinzadeh
    • , Curtis McCully
    • , Zheng Chuen Wong
    • , Sarah Rebekah Katz
    • , Avishay Gal-Yam
    • , Jesper Sollerman
    • , Francesco Taddia
    • , Giorgos Leloudas
    • , Christoffer Fremling
    • , Peter E. Nugent
    • , Assaf Horesh
    • , Kunal Mooley
    • , Clare Rumsey
    • , S. Bradley Cenko
    • , Melissa L. Graham
    • , Daniel A. Perley
    • , Ehud Nakar
    • , Nir J. Shaviv
    • , Omer Bromberg
    • , Ken J. Shen
    • , Eran O. Ofek
    • , Yi Cao
    • , Xiaofeng Wang
    • , Fang Huang
    • , Liming Rui
    • , Tianmeng Zhang
    • , Wenxiong Li
    • , Zhitong Li
    • , Jujia Zhang
    • , Stefano Valenti
    • , David Guevel
    • , Benjamin Shappee
    • , Christopher S. Kochanek
    • , Thomas W.-S. Holoien
    • , Alexei V. Filippenko
    • , Rob Fender
    • , Anders Nyholm
    • , Ofer Yaron
    • , Mansi M. Kasliwal
    • , Mark Sullivan
    • , Nadja Blagorodnova
    • , Richard S. Walters
    • , Ragnhild Lunnan
    • , Danny Khazov
    • , Igor Andreoni
    • , Russ R. Laher
    • , Nick Konidaris
    • , Przemek Wozniak
    •  & Brian Bue
    Nature 551, 210–213
  • Research | | open

    Solar eruptions provide opportunities to study magnetic flux ropes, a structure of fundamental importance for both plasma physics and space weather. Here the authors reveal the dynamic formation of a flux rope through its footprint on the solar surface, revealing a highly twisted core structure.

    • Wensi Wang
    • , Rui Liu
    • , Yuming Wang
    • , Qiang Hu
    • , Chenglong Shen
    • , Chaowei Jiang
    •  & Chunming Zhu
  • Research |

    The atmosphere of evolved star W Hya has been resolved with ALMA and shown to be shock heated. These observations provide important empirical constraints for the understanding of circumstellar structure, convection, chemistry and pulsation.

    • Wouter Vlemmings
    • , Theo Khouri
    • , Eamon O’Gorman
    • , Elvire De Beck
    • , Elizabeth Humphreys
    • , Boy Lankhaar
    • , Matthias Maercker
    • , Hans Olofsson
    • , Sofia Ramstedt
    • , Daniel Tafoya
    •  & Aki Takigawa

News and Comment

  • News and Views |

    How do you build a (distance) ladder from the closest stars to the far-away supernovae and all the way back to the last scattering surface of the Universe? Jeremy Mould summarizes some of the highlights of the Stellar Populations and the Distance Scale conference.

    • Jeremy Mould
    Nature Astronomy 1, 739–740
  • News and Views |

    The first detection of electromagnetic emission from a gravitational wave source bridges the gap between one of the most energetic phenomena in the Universe and their dark, difficult to detect progenitors.

    • Tyler Pritchard
    Nature Astronomy 1, 748–750
  • Editorial |

    It’s finally happened. With the first detection of a neutron star merger by LIGO and Virgo, astronomers have at long last begun the exploration of multi-messenger gravitational-wave astrophysics.

  • News and Views |

    The detection of bright, rapid optical pulsations from pulsar PSR J1023+0038 have provided a surprise for researchers working on neutron stars. This discovery poses more questions than it answers and will spur on future work and instrumentation.

    • Craig O. Heinke