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A Star, Sprinkled with Salt

A Star, Sprinkled with Salt

Artist impression of Orion Source I, a young, massive star about 1,500 light-years away. New ALMA observations detected a ring of salt -- sodium chloride, ordinary table salt -- surrounding the star. This is the first detection of salts of any kind associated with a young star. The blue region (about 1/3 the way out from the center of the disk) represents the region where ALMA detected the millimeter-wavelength "glow" from the salts.