Pictures Of Betelgeuse Blow Apart [Pic+]

Submitted by: 5cats 3 years ago Science

This HUGE star is blowing up only 640 light years away. Supernova soon...
There are 25 comments:
Female 4,447
SCIENCE!!!
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Male 36,517
@patchy: It`ll still be there, just not nearly as bright.

It will be like Orion has nasty arthritis... :-? poor fellow!
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Male 36,517
@Angilion: Yes, I`m far from "an expert" myself (as you may have suspected!).

The GRB (from a known source) was "backtracked" and seems to have been pointed at where the Earth was 400 million-odd years ago, killing off the trilobites... not entirely, just most of them. Could be coincidence of course! Not scheduled to happen again, ever, luckily!

The "supernova extinction" I read about a while ago. It`s just a theory (of course!) but there seems to be a link in one of the "lesser extinction periods" and a thin layer of "supernova residue". Since there`s been no supernovas close enough to (easily) explain that? They came up with 2 other theories. Multiple- and "Super-" supernovae...
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Male 12,365
Hmm...this in interesting. There is a hypothesis that multiple supernovae in a group about 130 LY from Earth at the time might have temporarily damaged the ozone layer enough to kill off some surface plankton, which might have caused a higher than average rate of extinctions because plankton is at the bottom of a lot of food chains. That would match what you thought, if both the hypotheses are correct.

So maybe the astronomers I`ve read are understating the risk, or maybe the astronomers behind the above hypothesis are wrong. I`ve read their paper, but I don`t know enough to evaluate it. It`s well over my head.
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Male 12,365
[quote]There`s been lots of "mass extinctions" aside for the 4 or 5 that were HUGE eh?[/quote]

Well...no. You used the term "one of the great extinctions" and there are 5 of them - the extinction level events. Although some people argue that we`re in the 6th one right now, given the effect that humanity has had since the industrial revolution.

[quote]The Gamma one being a BIG extinction and the supernova one being a "small" extinction... [/quote]

A supernova 200 lightyears away, if one happened, wouldn`t cause anything much on Earth. It wouldn`t kill anything, let alone cause widespread extinctions.

The last I looked, GRB was a hypothesis for the cause of one of the ELE, not a proven cause.
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Male 5,811
After it`s gone, I wonder how Orion will draw his bow without his shoulder.
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Female 7,838
As long as no poor beings are - or were suffering it`s cool.
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Male 5,811
Technically it`s supposed to run into a wall of space dust or something in 5-12 thousand years, so it might be even more interesting than a supernova, depending on what happens.
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Male 36,517
@Angillion: You are correct! There`s been lots of "mass extinctions" aside for the 4 or 5 that were HUGE eh? I may be connecting the "Gamma Burst" one with a supernova one, but I thought they were two events. The Gamma one being a BIG extinction and the supernova one being a "small" extinction...

We are looking at what happened 640 years ago. As close to "live on TV" as we`re going to get.

This "mass ejection" was predicted as part of it`s "death by supernova". There may be others to come as well. It was HUGE by any measure :-) and that`s interesting!
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Male 12,365
I think Ferdyfred was referring to us as individuals, not humanity in general. There would be ~640 years between Betelgeuse going nova and any sign of it reaching here, so if it went now then it`s almost certain that everyone alive today would be long dead before any sign of it showed up here.

Although it might have gone nova ~640 years ago and we`ll see it next week. Probably not, but maybe.
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Male 10,339
No we won`t Ferd. It will be a "second moon" for a few years, then die out.
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Male 13,624
If it has gone super nova
we will all be dead and gone before
it shows owt here
Oh and Andrew
go sit back in your armchair of `whats the point of living`
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Male 10,339
Betelgeuse, Betelgeuse, Betelgeuse.
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Male 15,832
[quote]Maybe there`s a poor planet orbiting that star... and watching its temperatures slowly rise...[/quote]
If there was an inhabited planet there, it`s long since been vaporized.
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Male 111
am I trippin or if you stare at this long enough does it start moving?
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Male 12,365
[quote]Yeah, that would be the minimum "Betelgeuse Block" required! If it blew? It might have a "lethal radius" of 500 light years! One of the "great extinctions" in Earth`s history was a similar supernova only it was apx 200 light years away: BBQ`d our poor planet![/quote]

Which one?

I think you`re a bit out on the danger range. The astronomers I`ve read put the dangerous distance at about 25 light years. Supernovae are apocalyptic events, but 25 light years is a lot of safety room.

Unless you`re thinking of a gamma ray burst powered by a supernova...in which case 500 light years isn`t far enough. 5000 light years could still be dangerous. GRBs are boggling destructive even by astronomy standards. But Betelgeuse can`t produce a GRB, so no problem there.
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Male 3,081
"Betelgeuse is COOL!"

Relatively speaking, yeah... :D

Get a load of Andrew getting all pissy just because some people take an interest in a topic. :D
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Male 36,517
@skytz1337 & @Listypoos: Yeah, either next year or 1 million years from now, approximately... give or take...

@madduck: Pretty sure Betelgeuse doesn`t have any planets: it`s one of the best studied stars out there! It`s a true monster! Thousands of times bigger than our puny Sun, I don`t think any planets could survive that gravity.

@carmium: If our Sun ejected that much "stuff"? It would wipe out the Earth, and Mars, and smack Jupiter around something awful! It`s the size of Uranus` orbit...

@Nickel2: Yeah, that would be the minimum "Betelgeuse Block" required! :-) If it blew? It might have a "lethal radius" of 500 light years! One of the "great extinctions" in Earth`s history was a similar supernova only it was apx 200 light years away: BBQ`d our poor planet!

Betelgeuse is COOL!
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Male 2,578
I love all of the armchair astronomers here.
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Female 6,381
Maybe there`s a poor planet orbiting that star... and watching its temperatures slowly rise, the CO2 rising in its atmosphere, the ice caps melting... Poor guys. 8-(
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Female 7,838
To watch a super nova would be great, but as Listypoos said- chances are slim-
Am I the only one slightly worried something might be getting hurt out there??
Yeah- ok, I know. I`ll go to bed then.
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Male 5,874
Break out the factor 500 lotion!
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Male 3,081
It may have already blown apart....we just wouldn`t know about it for nearly 650 years.

I`d love this star to go nova in my lifetime.....sadly the chances aren`t that good, in astronomy terms `just about to explode` could be anywhere in the hundreds of thousands of years range.
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Male 687
yea...soon..like..200 years or something
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Male 36,517
Link: Pictures Of Betelgeuse Blow Apart [Pic+] [Rate Link] - This HUGE star is blowing up only 640 light years away. Supernova soon...
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