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The biggest star ever discovered?

07-22-2010 09:48 BJT

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A huge star in a neighboring galaxy could be the biggest star ever discovered.

Scientists say it is hundreds of times more massive than the sun and is twice as big as any other star previously discovered.

Astronomers discovered the star by using the European Space Observatory's Telescope, which is located in Chile's Atacama Desert.

The star has a mass of about 265 times that of the sun and is just over a million years old.

Scientists have predicted surface temperatures can surpass 40,000 degrees Celsius. That's seven times hotter and several million times brighter than the sun.

Dr. Richard Parker, Scientist Shefield University, said, "It's incredibly significant. Until recently people assumed that there was a fundamental upper limit to how massive a star could be and that upper limit was 150 times the mass of our own sun, which in itself is quite large."

The star is part of a cluster of massive stars in the Tarantula Nebula, which is a sprawling cloud of gas and dust in a galaxy, about 165,000 light-years away from the Milky Way.

The smallest 'red dwarfs', low mass 'yellow dwarfs' such as the Sun, massive 'blue dwarf' stars weighing eight times more than the Sun, and the 300 solar mass star
The smallest 'red dwarfs', low mass 'yellow dwarfs' such as the Sun, massive 'blue dwarf'
stars weighing eight times more than the Sun, and the 300 solar mass star

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