Astronomers have for several years considered star cluster M 67 located 2700 light years away, as a possible origin of our Sun.
This leading and commonly accepted theory must be now revisited.
Barbara Pichardo Ph.D. and her colleagues, Edmundo Moreno, Christine Allen, Luigi R. Bedin, Andrea Bellini, Luca Pasquini of the
National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico City Mexico conducted detailed computer simulations and searched for the Sun and
M 67 close encounters in the past.
Our Sun does not originate from M 67. Credit: MessageToEagle.com
Considering the resemblance in age, metallicity, and distance from the Galactic center, of the old open cluster M 67 and the Sun,
scientists explored the possibility that the Sun was once a member of M 67.
The analysis of these close encounters shows that the corresponding relative velocity between the Sun and M 67 is larger than 20 km/s.
This velocity is too high; a three-body encounter within M 67, with the Sun being one of the three bodies, and
giving this ejection velocity to the Sun, would destroy an initial circumstellar disk around the Sun, or disperse its already formed planets.
The scientists say that the Sun was not ejected by a three-body encounter in M 67. By analyzing a possible encounter of M 67 with a giant
molecular cloud, they find a very low probability, much less than 10-7, that the Sun was ejected from M 67 by such an encounter.
Additionally, the high values of the relative velocity also exclude the possibility that the Sun and M 67 were born in the same molecular cloud.
The star cluster Messier 67 is an old (about 4 billion years) open star cluster located in our galaxy.
The image above is a composite of short exposures taken with the MMT "Megacam" camera. The camera is a 268 megapixel camera,
and covers an area about the size of the full moon. This image is cropped to show the center of the cluster, and is
roughly 15 arcminutes on a side. The reddish stars are red giants, stars reaching the ends of their lives and swelling
from about the size of the sun into monsters that would engulf the Earth. Credits Dr. Kurtis A. Williams, Astrophotography
"We have illustrated the effect of the spiral arms on the Galactic orbits of the Sun and M 67. Modeling the spiral arms as transient features might prove to
be compatible with the Sun-M 67 common-origin hypothesis.
Our dynamical results convincingly demonstrate that M67 could not have been the birth cluster of our Solar System," Barbara Pichardo says.
Written By MessageToEagle.com based on material provided by Cornell University Library
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