Astronomers have just caught a new type of explosion that could help us understand how stars erupt
Article by: Andacs Robert Eugen, on 21 April 2022, at 03:35 am Los Angeles time
Scientists have recently reported a new type of explosion that could change the way we see and perceive star eruptions.
The type of explosion - micronovae- is a thermonuclear explosion.
The thermonuclear explosion is obtained by fusing the nuclei of lightweight atoms, lightweight elements.
This new type of explosion is still new to us, and we consider it rare, but astronomers believe that explosions - the micronovae type - are common in the universe.
We do not notice these explosions because they last very short, much less compared to others more common to us.
Micronovae explosions last only a few hours, which means that if astronomers do not do research in the direction in which they happen, the chances of discovering them are very small.
This new phenomenon has been observed by lucky astronomers three times. They noticed a phenomenon on 3 white dwarfs, each of them devoured another accompanying star.
Research and discoveries were made by researchers led by scientists at Durham University, using data from NASA's TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite).
"Looking through astronomical data collected by Nasa's TESS, we discovered something unusual: a bright flash of optical light lasting for a few hours. Searching further, we found several similar signals," said Nathalie Degenaar, astronomer at the University of Amsterdam.
"We have discovered and identified for the first time what we are calling a micronova," said lead author Simone Scaringi.
"The phenomenon challenges our understanding of how thermonuclear explosions in stars occur. We thought we knew this, but this discovery proposes a totally new way to achieve them.
"It just goes to show how dynamic the Universe is. These events may actually be quite common, but because they are so fast they are difficult to catch in action."