The 2nd Largest Star of the Milky Way Galaxy, VY Canis Majoris, is about to die

Written By Eleman

The 2nd Largest Star in the Milky Way Galaxy is Dying: The Star 1500 Times Larger than the Sun, VY Canis Majoris, is about to die.

Scientists from the University of Arizona will examine the death of the star YV Canis Majoris, which is more than 1500 times larger than Earth, through the model. The model under development will also offer a clear idea of ​​the star’s appearance.

VY Canis Majoris, located in the Big Dog constellation and one of the largest stars discovered in the universe to date, has been studied by scientists for a long time. However, the reviews that have been made in real time until today are now being carried to the virtual environment thanks to technology.

Scientists from the University of Arizona announced that they are developing the model of the star YV Canis Majoris, which is about 3,840 light years away. The developed model will be used to predict how the massive star, which falls into the category of red supergiant star, will die.

Another question mark about the stars will be solved

Sun and VY Canis Majoris bg.svg

The lives of stars and the stages they go through is one of the topics that is still discussed in the scientific world. Although it is known that the stars generally follow a certain order, it is still not known exactly how red supergiants such as VY Canis Majoris die. Some people think that these stars explode (supernova) like other stars.

Scientists at the University of Arizona also want to eliminate this question mark. In this context, scientists collected the radio waves of gas and dust scattered from the star with the world’s most powerful telescope ALMA. While a total of more than one terabyte of data has been obtained to date, it is stated that the processing of this data continues. With the processing of the data, it will be revealed how the star looks and how it can eventually die.

VY Canis Majoris, also known as VY CMa, is a red supergiant star in the constellation Canis Major and is one of the largest known stars in the universe. Its radius is 1.420±120 radii of the sun.

VY Canis Majoris and its complexity


The UA team, led by AP Singh, chose VY Canis Majoris as the perfect model for the red hypergiants they wanted to learn more about. The star is characterized by dimensions between 10,000 and 15,000 Astronomical Units. This means it would be 10,000 to 15,000 times Earth today from the Sun. Its size and proximity to our Solar System make it an excellent candidate for observation. With good observational data, astronomers can see the complexity of the star’s surface.

One of the fundamental processes in the death of a star is mass loss. This process happens when gas and dust are pushed out of the star’s photosphere. The AU researchers then used ALMA to catalog the radio signals caused by the space-launched material of VY Canis Majoris. Containing sulfur dioxide, silicon dioxide and sodium chloride, this material will make it possible to detect the speed at which it moves.

We are waiting for the real model

To do this, the scientists had to align all 48 ALMA plates and collect more than a terabyte of data to extract the information. Processing all this data still involves researchers. However, its preliminary results were presented to the American Astronomical Society in mid-June. With subsequent data, they will be able to describe an even better model of the appearance of one of the galaxy’s largest stars. And this pattern of what will happen to a red hypergiant the day before, in the last spasms of his life, may have a chance to be tested when VY Canis Majoris dies.

The study, published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, can be found here.

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