Gold could have come from colliding stars

Published in Horizon, 4 Aug 2016

If you are wearing a gold ring on your finger, it may well have started life in the collision of two neutron stars – small celestial objects that are formed when massive stars collapse.

That is the conclusion of physicist Dr Andreas Bauswein at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki in Greece and colleagues, who have been studying the ramifications of such colossal events in computer simulations.

‘The formation of heavy elements is a major topic in stellar astrophysics,’ said Dr Bauswein. ‘We want to understand where and how elements like gold and uranium were produced.’ […]

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