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Hubble spots farthest individual star ever seen …Kavignar Thanigai.

Hubble Telescope Detects The Farthest Individual Star Ever

The most distant star ever to be discovered was recently located by astronomers using the Hubble telescope, with the research taking place at the University of Minnesota. “You can see individual galaxies out there, but this star is at least 100 times farther away than the next individual star we can study, except for supernova explosions”, said former UC Berkeley postdoctoral scholar Patrick Kelly, now on the faculty at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. “It appears to us as it did when the universe was about 30 percent of its current age”. Scientists have detected the most distant star ever viewed, a blue behemoth located more than halfway across the universe and named after the ancient Greek mythological figure Icarus. And the star may be hundreds of thousands of times brighter than our sun as well, though still so far away that gravitational lensing was key to its observation. It just so happened that Icarus passed “along the critical curve” of the cluster, Kelly said, which warped the starlight in our direction – a process called gravitational lensing. It involves the bending of light by massive galaxy clusters in the line of sight, which magnifies more distant celestial objects. By combining the strength of the gravitational lens and Hubble’s resolution, astronomers were able to see and study Icarus. “Mass bends the paths of light that travels near it”, Kelly said. Usually, the cluster magnifies Icarus by a factor of about 600. By modeling the lens, they concluded that the tremendous apparent brightening of Icarus was probably caused by a unique effect of gravitational lensing. Details about the landmark event appear in a paper, titled “Extreme magnification of a star at redshift 1.5 by a galaxy cluster lens”, which was published online yesterday in Nature Astronomy. The ring is too small to discern from this distance, but the effect made the star easily visible by magnifying its apparent brightness. “They effectively worked together – the cluster actually makes the star in the cluster act like a much more powerful lens”, Kelly said. “For this type of research, nature has provided us with a larger telescope than we can possibly build!” “This is the first time we’re seeing a magnified, individual star”. In this April 25, 1990 photograph provided by NASA, most of the giant Hubble Space Telescope can be seen as it is suspended in space by Discovery’s Remote Manipulator System (RMS) following the deployment of part of its solar panels and antennae.

dedicated by: Kavignar Thanigai.

thanks: Alive from Football


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