What is a star?

A star is a huge sphere of very hot, glowing gas. Stars produce their own light and energy by a process called nuclear fusion. Fusion happens when lighter elements are forced to become heavier elements. When this happens, a tremendous amount of energy is created causing the star to heat up and shine. Stars come in a variety of sizes and colors. Our Sun is an average sized yellowish star. Stars which are smaller than our Sun are reddish and larger stars are blue.


Learn about IRAS, the first infrared telescope launched into Earth's orbit!