The star RS Ophiuchus exploded again. It can be observed at night with the naked eye

The star RS Ophiuchus exploded again. It can be observed at night with the naked eye
The star RS Ophiuchus exploded again. It can be observed at night with the naked eye
Anonim

If you are attentive enough to the sky and have looked at it during the last nights, you may have noticed the appearance of a new bright point. In truth, it is not new at all, but these days it burns unusually brightly. The star RS Ophiuchus, 4566 light-years away, is erupting. She became as much as seven magnitudes brighter - 4, 8 instead of 12.

RS Ophiuchus is a recurring nova: a star that periodically erupts. Only a dozen of these stars have been found in the Milky Way galaxy. RS Ophiuchus flares up approximately every 15-20 years. The last time it was in 2006.

RS Ophiuchi OUTBURST

Taken by Ernesto Guido, Marco Rocchetto & Adriano Valvasori on August 9, 2021 @ Remotely from Australia through TELESCOPE LIVE network

recurrent nova RS Oph is in Outburst. The last large outburst of RS Oph occurred in Feb. 2006, → pic.twitter.com/FMqDZEQ0Xx

- mizuho kai (@ mizuho73700856) August 9, 2021

The fact is that RS Ophiuchus is a binary system. There, a red giant and a white dwarf spin in an endless gravitational dance. And with an enviable frequency, this dance leads to a cataclysm. The white dwarf constantly draws material from the red giant into its atmosphere. Having reached a critical mass, stellar matter falls onto the surface of the dwarf, which leads to a colossal explosion. This explosion is called a flash of a new one. During this explosion, the brightness of the star increases significantly.

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