Methanol Reveals Magnetic Fields in Space (image) Chalmers University of Technology Share Print E-Mail Caption Magnetic fields play an important role in the places where most massive stars are born. This illustration shows the surroundings of a forming massive star, and the bright regions where radio signals from methanol can be found. The bright spots represent methanol masers -- natural lasers that are common in the dense environments where massive stars form -- and the curved lines represent the magnetic field. Thanks to new calculations by astrochemists, astronomers can now start to investigate magnetic fields in space by measuring the radio signals from methanol molecules in these bright sources. Credit Wolfgang Steffen/Boy Lankhaar et al. (molecules: Wikimedia Commons/Ben Mills) Usage Restrictions None Share Print E-Mail Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.