Giant galactic bubble is driving star formation, new study finds

This visualization shows the Local Bubble with star formation happening on its surface. (Image credit: Leah Hustak (STScI))

Earth is surrounded by a vast bubble about 1,000 light-years wide whose borders drive the formation of all nearby young stars, a new study finds.

For decades, astronomers have known the solar system lies within the so-called “Local Bubble,” a giant void surrounded by thousands of young stars. However, much has remained unclear about this bubble — everything from its precise size and shape to its origins and evolution has remained unknown.