What is the difference between a neutron star and a white dwarf?

  • What is the difference between a neutron star and a white dwarf? I know that both are very dense even if they go through different phases.


  • In a neutron star, the force of gravity is strong enough to press the protons and electrons together to form neutrons {1}, White dwarfs are only very compact. With even more mass, you get a black hole.

    All three types are outcomes of star death, when the failing fusion in the middle of a star is no longer able to counteract gravity. What a star become when it collapses is depending on its mass.


    White dwarfs are dense enough to force the electrons out of their shells--you have electrons and bare nuclei, not complete atoms.

    @LorenPechtel The same can be said about the plasma in the Sun.

    True, but the sun is held up by the pressure from it's heat. A white dwarf isn't. Note that the inside of a star can become basically a white dwarf.

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Content dated before 7/24/2021 11:53 AM