Release Images

Release No.: 2010-03
For Release: Wednesday, March 3, 2010 - 8:00am

First of Missing Primitive Stars Discovered

red giant star S1020549

The newly discovered red giant star S1020549 dominates this artist's conception. The primitive star contains 6,000 times less heavy elements than our Sun, indicating that it formed very early in the Universe's history. Located in the dwarf galaxy Sculptor some 290,000 light-years away, the star's presence supports the theory that our galaxy underwent a "cannibal" phase, growing to its current size by swallowing dwarf galaxies and other galactic building blocks.

David A. Aguilar (CfA)