Fourth Place - Aaron Geller

Postdoctoral Fellow, Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Center for Interdisciplinary Exploration and Research in Astrophysics

“Star Cluster Evolution in Stereo3D”

Our sun likely formed in a cluster of about 100 stars that dissolved billions of years ago. Geller and his colleagues use computer-simulated models to study how such star clusters form and evolve.

This image shows a 500-million-year time lapse of a model star cluster similar to our Sun’s birthplace. Points indicate where stars formed, and the lines trace their motion under the force of gravity. The colors of the lines indicate the temperature of the stars, with blue being hotter than red. The two yellow regions toward the right mark two supernovae – stars that exploded.  And, the thick white line highlights the path of a Sun-like star escaping from the cluster, as Geller believes our own Sun did many years ago.

The two side-by-side images are from different vantage points, and can be combined to create a “cross-eyed” 3D image in the middle. Click on the image for the full version, which is easier to view in 3D.

Technique: NBODY6 and Partiview softwares, computer generated

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