hungry star chews own planets off

A giant star has been caught in the act of swallowing three planets, one after the other, with each "meal" accompanied by a massive eruption.

The star, known as V838 Monocerotis, is about 20,000 light years from Earth. In January 2002, it temporarily became the brightest star in the Milky Way, 600,000 times more luminous than the Sun. [...] Retter and colleague Ariel Marom believe their new analysis of light emissions from the star indicates that it was a red giant that expanded and successively swallowed three relatively massive planets in quick succession. The time between the first and the last engulfment was only about two months.

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6 Responses:

  1. suppafly says:

    so it got hungry.. ate three planets and now its burping ..

  2. heliosapien says:

    i'd seen those shots somewhere before, but i think i must have filtered it out as a CG wormhole animation.. the speed at which the shell must have expanded is.. mind blowing. a massive shockwave of stardust ripping through planets at ~50K mph. it would pass through earth's diameter in about 6 minutes... ..

    RAD. if the apocalypse ever does actually come, i hope this is how it goes down. :D

    ps - your links rock.

  3. gths says:

    Holy crap. Now I'm scared.

    • selectronica says:

      I'm pissed. If this were to happen to Earth, it won't be for a very long time. Humanity won't even be around to feel the blow.

      I always miss all the cool shit, damn it.

  4. jette says:

    It's the Dark Phoenix!

  5. rubber_shirt says:

    That's no star, it's a space station.