New Information Could Explain the Dimming of Betelgeuse

Betelgeuse has been a topic of interest in recent months after the distant star was affected by unexpected dimming. Some argued that the event, which lasted for four most, was a sign which inferred that an explosion would take place in the near future.

However, the dimming effect stopped, and the star regained its usual brightness. A team of researchers surveyed the star with the help of the Hubble Space Telescope and may have uncovered essential information that could explain what caused the dimming event.

Massive size

The star is up to 700 times bigger than the Sun, and if it was brought in the solar system, it would devour most planets and objects in a few seconds. Despite its sheer size, the end draws near, as astronomers believe that it will reach the end of its life cycle in the next 100,000 years.

While some thought that the supernova process might have begun, the data collected by Hubble contradicts them. Scans of UV wavelengths had revealed a massive amount of fiery material that traveled from the southern hemisphere of the star and reached an impressive speed before it was ejected into the void.

Bright and fast

The material, which reached a speed of 200,000 miles per hour, was also two to four times more bright in comparison to the star. According to the researchers, the ejected material began to cool down in space, forming a thick dust cloud that covered a part of Betelgeuse.

Earth’s position offered the chance to perceive the front of the gas cloud as Betelgeuse ejected material towards the US. A new dimming event has been spotted at the start of August, and future observations will take place at the end of the month when the star will reach a position that is better for scientific measurements.

Current results have been published in a scientific journal.

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