Gravity always wants to compress a star, as it compresses everything within the universe by default. Stars have the ability to resist compression because of the way they produce energy, energy which is released from fusion. Stars are essentially stable because of an outward moving pressure due to their nuclear fusion balanced with the inward force of gravity. Smaller stars can’t fuse elements heavier than helium. In the most massive of stars, fusion crushes heavier and heavier atoms, all the way...
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