Most dis­tant star ever spot­ted

Sky at Night Magazine - - BULLETIN -

The fur­thest in­di­vid­ual star ever seen has been dis­cov­ered in re­cent Hub­ble im­ages, thanks to a nat­u­rally oc­cur­ring grav­i­ta­tional quirk.

The light from the star, nick­named Icarus, has taken nine bil­lion years to reach us, and dates from when the Uni­verse was four bil­lion years old. The grav­ity of a galaxy clus­ter bent Icarus’s light, mag­ni­fy­ing it by 2,000 times – a process known as grav­i­ta­tional lens­ing – mak­ing it vis­i­ble.

“This is the first time we’re see­ing a mag­ni­fied, in­di­vid­ual star,” says Pa­trick Kelly of the Univer­sity of Min­nesota, Twin Cities, who led the study. “You can see in­di­vid­ual gal­ax­ies out there but this star is at least 100 times fur­ther away than the next in­di­vid­ual star we can study, ex­cept for su­per­nova ex­plo­sions.” http://hub­ble­site.org

2011 5” 2016 Hub­ble was mon­i­tor­ing a su­per­nova in a dis­tant spi­ral galaxy when, in 2016, it de­tected a new point of light

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