The place where stars are formed

This is an area of the Milky Way known as CTB 102, about 14,000 light-years from Earth.

The area is classified as an HII region. It contains massive clouds of ionised hydrogen atoms, and is known to be a very active star nursery.

Its distance from Earth and an enormous conglomeration of gas and dust that lies just in front of it mean that CTB 102 has been challenging to observe.

Now, however, researchers led by Sung-ju Kang from the Korea Astronomy and Space Institute have succeeded in creating first-ever high-resolution image of the region, using carbon monoxide observations of molecular clouds.

The image was attained using a new radio-telescope installed at the Taeduk Radio Astronomy Observatory in South Korea.

The results will soon be published in the Astrophysical Journal, and are currently available on the pre-print server, arxiv.

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