NASA’s Webb Space Telescope has successfully captured the elusive and momentary phase of a star that is about to die. On Tuesday, NASA unveiled the image at the South by Southwest conference held in Austin, Texas, the Associated Press reported.
Shortly after its launch in late 2021, the Webb Space Telescope made one of its earliest observations. Using its infrared capabilities, it captured an image of a massive, hot star located 15,000 light-years away, showcasing all the gas and dust that was being expelled into space. It’s important to note that one light-year equals approximately 5.8 trillion miles.
The star’s outer layer, which was once part of the star, is now shimmering in a purple hue reminiscent of cherry blossoms. While the Hubble Space Telescope had previously captured an image of the same star in transition several decades ago, the details were not as intricate, and the star appeared more like a fiery ball.
According to scientists, only certain stars undergo such a transformation, which typically marks the final stage before they explode, resulting in a supernova, as reported by the AP.
Written by staff