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Spectacular Hypergiant Star Found Passing Through "Forbidden Zone"

10 Dec 2012, 16:40 UTC
Spectacular Hypergiant Star Found Passing Through "Forbidden Zone"
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A European research team has discovered an extraordinary hypergiant star as it went through while it went through an extremely rare stage called the 'Yellow Evolutionary Void'. The team have found that the surface temperature of the super-luminous star HR 8752 increased by about 3000 degrees in less than three decades. The discovery marks an important step closer to unravelling the evolution of the most massive stars. The discovery is an important step forward to resolve the enigma of the hypergiants, the most luminous and massive stars of the Galaxy. Hypergiants can shine millions of times brighter than the Sun, and they often have a diameter several hundred times greater.

The astronomers investigated the hypergiant star HR 8752 for 30 years while it traversed the 'Yellow Evolutionary Void' --a short stage in the lives of the most massive stars when they become very unstable. The team finds that the surface temperature of HR 8752 rose surprisingly fast from 5000 to 8000 degrees in less than 30 years.
HR 8752 is a quarter million times more luminous than the Sun. The powerhouse is therefore visible with normal binoculars at large distance from the Earth in the Northern constellation of Cassiopeia. There ...

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