Magnetars and Ulirgs

A Peculiar Phenomenon

Magnetars are quite distant from us usually, and are actually pulsars in their infancy.  They are only about 20 miles in diameter and are only spinning at about 3 or 4 times per second and only last in this state for a few hundred years before they speed up to 30 times per second rotation or more, and can go as fast as 600 rotations per second!  As pulsars, they only last about 10 thousand more years.  This is because of the enormous output of energy that can outshine the full combination of millions of stars around them!  Though impressive, this is not what they’re known for, rather, they’re enormous, and far reaching magnetic fields.


These magnetic waves extend across the entire universe!  Their great distances serve to our advantage, for though only being 20 miles in diameter, if one were a million miles away, or fore times the distance of our moon, it would neutralize every magnet on Earth no matter how strong.  Many times more massive than our sun, one tea-spoon of its matter would weigh in at a whopping 100 million tons!  Before it could suck us in, it’s blistering heat would cook us all!


They end their lives quietly, having quickly exhausted all their energy. After which, their activity and strong X-Ray emissions cease.  They are in fact, a form of neutron star and it is estimated that there are about 30 million dead Magnetars in our own galaxy alone!  When supernovas collapse into Neutron stars their magnetic fields increase dramatically, forming the Magnetar.

These supernovas also form beautiful nebulae. One of the most famous of which is the Orion nebula entirely lit by the fore new stars at its center called: ‘The Trapezium’ because they form that shape; all there, because a giant star exploded, creating all the elements necessary for life and the formation of new stars, leaving behind it’s shell at the center, a Magnetar. Orion is the closest such Nebula, some 400 light years away and is visible to the naked eye from Earth, as a tiny smudge in the sword of Orion, in the night sky.

Some of these nebulae are made mostly of ethyl alcohol (beer).  In fact a cloud a mere light year across would provide every person on Earth with 300,000 pints of beer a day for a billion years!  Of corpse we wouldn’t drink nearly that much unless it were readily available to us.  So lets go get some!  LOL!  Check it out:


I love acronyms!  They give you an easy way of remembering long, drawn out names.  Ulirg stands for: ‘Ultra Luminous,Infra Red Galaxies’.  So they emit light at very low wave lengths.  The unusual and peculiar thing about Ulirgs is that within our own Galaxy we form a new star on average, about once a year.  Where-as Ulirgs form about 100 new stars per year!  This indeed is star formation gone wild.

It’s suspected this occurs when two or more galaxies collide sharing all their gas causing a run away effect of star formation. Galaxies colliding must contain some super massive stars for the effect to take place…


‘Although ULIRGs are thought to evolve into quasars and then into giant early-type galaxies, future considerations of the evolution of galaxies will need to take into account the impact of multiple mergers, not just major mergers between two galaxies.’


These galaxies eventually become quite massive!  Though it’s still hypothesis, it appears fairly evident that when galaxies collide, a Ulirg will more than likely form.  Check that out here:


7 thoughts on “Magnetars and Ulirgs

    • Your mission? Heading of to a Magnetar are you? LOL! How physics relates to Astronomy can be complex at times. It’s just that there are so many truly bizarre things out there, it’s hard to wrap our minds around. Not to worry though. It’s just maybe not your thing. I try to put up something for everybody. Hope to hear from you again. Thanks so much for your honest comment!

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