The research paper on which this release is based was published in The Astrophysical Journal (Otsuka et al." The Detection of C60 in the Well-Characterized Planetary Nebula M1-11" The Astrophysical Journal, 764:77 (20pp), 2013 February 10).
The authors are:
- Masaaki Otsuka (Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics [ASIAA]/Space Telescope Science Institute [STScI]), Taiwan/USA
- Franciska Kemper (ASIAA), Taiwan
- Siek Hyung (Chungbuk National University), Korea
- Benjamin A. Sargent (Rochester Institute of Technology [RIT]/STScI), USA
- Margaret Meixner (STScI), USA
- Akito Tajitsu (Subaru Telescope), USA
- Ken'shi Yanagisawa (Okayama Astrophysical Observatory [OAO]), Japan
This research was supported by the following:
- Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) GO-1129.01-A, DDRFD0101.90128, USA
- National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) NAO-50-12595, USA
- National Science Council NSC100-2112-M-001-023-MY3, Taiwan
- National Research Foundation of Korea NRF-2011-005077, Korea
- A fullerene is any carbon molecule with the chemical formula C60. It is patterned in a very specific way, like the pentagons and hexagons that make up the shape of a soccer ball. Named in homage to the designer, author, and inventor Buckminster Fuller, fullerenes resemble the geodesic domes that Fuller invented. C60 is nicknamed a "buckyball", once again in honor of Buckminster Fuller.
- Planetary nebulae are dying Sun-like stars that were initially one to eight times the mass of the Sun. They are clouds of glowing gas and dust surrounding a hot star (over 30,000 K).
- See http://www.sciencemag.org/content/329/5996/1180.abstract