Data Centre for Astrophysics
Astronomy Department of the University of Geneva
ISDC Seminar

Wednesday, 15 April 2009 at 11:00

Kevin Briggs
ETH Z├╝rich, Switzerland

The Orion Nebula's 2 million degree bubble

Abstract. The Orion Nebula is one of astronomy's best-loved, most-photographed and well-studied objects. As the closest example of a rich star-forming region, it gives us perhaps the best insight into the environment in which our own solar system formed. Recent X-ray observations have serendipitously revealed a hitherto well-kept secret: a two-million degree plasma filling the cavity associated with the Nebula. I describe the discovery, origin and implications of this hot bubble, which appears to have burst, providing a continuous source of hot, enriched material to the interstellar medium, complementing the larger, infrequent discrete inputs from supernova explosions.

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