Space & Astronomy
Unbound star traveling at 1,200km per second
By T.K. Randall
March 11, 2015 · 16 comments
The star was sent on its way after its companion star exploded. Image Credit: NASA/Swift/Cruz deWilde
Astronomers have identified an unbound star that's moving faster than any ever seen before.
Discovered by a team of scientists at Queen's University, the star, which is moving through space at the blistering pace of 1,200 kilometres per second, is the fastest object of its kind ever recorded within our own galaxy.
Designated US708, the star is believed to have once belonged to a binary star system and is likely to have been sent hurtling off in to space at high speed when its companion star, a white dwarf, turned in to a thermonuclear supernova and exploded.
This type of supernova, or "type la", has long been used to calculate the distance to other galaxies.
"Several types of stars have been suspected of causing the explosion of a white dwarf as supernova of type Ia," said study leader Stephan Geier. "Until now, none of them could be confirmed."
"Now we have found a delinquent on the run bearing traces from the crime scene."
Source: Belfast Live
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