Washington: Scientists have made progress in finding out how the sun was born.
The team led by Monash University researchers, Dr Maria Lugaro and Professor Alexander Heger, investigated the solar system`s prehistoric phase and the events, by using radioactive nuclei found in meteorites.
They found the last time when heavy elements such as gold, silver, platinum, lead and rare-earth elements were added to the solar system matter by the stars that produced them.
Dr Lugaro said that they were confidence that the final 1 per cent of gold, silver and platinum, were added to the solar system matter roughly 100 million years before the birth of the sun while the final 1 per cent of lead and rare-earth elements were added 30 million years before.
Some time post the last addition of heavy elements, the solar system matter went into an `incubation` period, during which time the stellar nursery formed, where the sun was born together with a number of other stars.
Dr Lugaro added that since they know that the incubation period could not have lasted more than 30 million years, it gave them the chance to determine the lifespan of the nursery where the sun was born, how massive it was and how many stars were born there together.
Understanding the timescales and processes leading to the formation of our solar system, was key to relate its birth environment with that of other planetary systems in the galaxy, he concluded.
The research is published in Science.