Low Mass Stars Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is Low Mass Stars?
Low mass stars are an important type of star in our universe, and they play a key role in the evolution of galaxies. Low mass stars are characterized by their low masses relative to other stars, typically less than around 0.5 solar masses. They have relatively long lifetimes compared to higher mass stars and also tend to be much cooler and dimmer than more massive stars. Due to their long lifetimes and lower temperatures, low-mass stars can remain on the main sequence for billions of years without evolving into red giants or supernovae like their high-mass counterparts might do over shorter timescales. This makes them essential components of stellar populations in galaxies since they provide a stable source of light for extended periods of time, helping shape the galaxy’s luminosity profile over its lifetime. Low-mass stars are also important because they are abundant sources of material throughout galactic disks that will eventually become part of subsequent generations of new stars as well as planets when these materials collapse into clouds under gravity and form protostellar systems. In this way, low-mass stars ultimately contribute directly to the formation process for many stellar objects currently seen within galaxies today. Finally, due to their cool surface temperature and slow nuclear burning rates, low-mass stars make ideal targets for observation with telescopes both from Earth as well as space observatories such as Hubble or Chandra X-ray Observatory due to their faintness making it easier to detect emission from surrounding nebulae or exoplanets which may orbit them. The study of these objects is therefore useful not only in understanding how galaxies evolve but also how planets form around different types of host star systems allowing us gain insight into potential habitability factors amongst extrasolar planetary systems orbiting low mass parent bodies.