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Astronomers Report Largest Star Explosion Yet

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Astronomers Report Largest Star Explosion Yet

Space

Astronomers Report Largest Star Explosion Yet

Astronomers Report Largest Star Explosion Yet

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  • <iframe src="https://www.npr.org/player/embed/10060410/10060418" width="100%" height="290" frameborder="0" scrolling="no" title="NPR embedded audio player">
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Artist's illustration of supernova SN 2006gy. NASA hide caption

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NASA

Artist's illustration of supernova SN 2006gy.

NASA

Astronomers say they've discovered an exploding star, a supernova, far brighter than any seen before.

"This was a truly monstrous explosion, a hundred times more energetic than a typical supernova," said Nathan Smith of the University of California at Berkeley, who led a team of astronomers from California and the University of Texas in Austin.

"That means the star that exploded might have been as massive as a star can get, about 150 times that of our sun. We've never seen that before."

The tantalizing, initial observations of supernova SN 2006gy are being published in the Astrophysical Journal.