A star either “hid” from telescopes behind a massive cloud of dust, or turned into a black hole.
Astrophysicists have reported the sudden disappearance of a large star, which is 2.5 million times brighter than the Sun, in the constellation Aquarius. Scientists have two versions of her disappearance, the correspondent writes.
Astronomers called the process of extinction of the star a surprise.
“Such large stars usually become the source of bright supernova explosions at the end of their existence. Therefore, the disappearance of this star was a surprise for us, ”said Andrew Allan, an astrophysicist at Trinity College in Dublin.
According to the expert, the star either “hid” from telescopes behind a massive cloud of dust, or turned into a black hole, bypassing the stage of transformation into a supernova.
“If it really turned directly into a black hole, then we became the first witnesses of how the life of a giant star ended this way,” added Andrew Allan.
Astrophysicists have said that for several years they observed the dwarf galaxy PHL 293B in the constellation Aquarius at a distance of 75 million light-years from the Milky Way. A large star was discovered there, the brightness of which is 2.5 million times higher than that of the Sun.
Scientists have found that the celestial body was in the last stages of its existence. Suddenly, the telescopes did not find the object. The star disappeared without leaving any trace.
Now, to confirm or refute their hypotheses, astronomers are waiting for the completion of the ultra-modern super-sensitive 100-foot telescope E-ELT. With it, you can get detailed pictures of the surroundings of the disappeared star and understand what happened to it.