An Image of a New-Born Star Brought to Earth by ALMA
What you are seeing a new-born star. Think of it as a baby in a galactic nursery of unlimited babies. The ALMA observations (orange and green, lower right) of the newborn star reveal a large energetic jet moving away from us, though it’s mostly covered by dust and gas. To the left (in pink and purple) is the visible part of the jet, streaming partly towards us. This beautiful imagery is brought to you by ALMA, an important new facility in our ever-expanding exploration of space.
The Atacama Large Millimeter/sub-millimeter Array (ALMA) is a collection of carefully arranged telescopes or mirror segments acting together to probe structures with higher resolution in space. ALMA is located at the Llano de Chajnantor Observatory in the Atacama desert of northern Chile. The antennas can be moved across the desert plateau over great distances which give ALMA a powerful variable “zoom.” The high sensitivity is mainly achieved through the large numbers of telescopes that make up the array. Because of this, we can now see amazing images of space in greater detail. ALMA is very important to space research and allows for pictures like the one above.