Huge Space Snowman - New Star Born

UK Scientists Discover Two Merging Stars Shaped Like a Snowman

Source:  Warwick University, UK

Unique Shape and Unique Atmosphere Composition
Nothing like this new star has ever been discovered in space before.  Warwick University scientists have spotted a huge, snowman-shaped star. It's a new star just born by the merger of two "white dwarf" stars.  They've named the star WDJ0551+4135.  The star's atmosphere is unique and unusually rich in carbon.  Everything about this star has the potential of leading to new scientific discoveries about the universe and the birth and death of stars.

Bigger Than the Sun
The new Snowman star is more massive than the Sun.  Another unusual aspect of the birth of this star is that the merger of the two "white Dwarf" stars didn't result in an explosion and powerful supernova.  The Warwick University scientists say what is particularly exciting for their research is that the stars merged rather than exploded, as is usual.

How a Star is Born
The scientists believe that measuring the properties of the failed supernova will tell them a lot about the "pathways to thermonuclear self annihilation" of stars.  A "white dwarf" is what stars like the Sun become after using up all of their nuclear fuel.  In this case, a new star was born by the successful merger of two starts.


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