Most Powerful Supernova Recorded Yet Shone 570 Billion Times Brighter Than Sun
January 18, 2016 03:49 PM EST
Astronomers have recorded the most powerful supernova known that at its peak was 570 billion times brighter than the Sun!
Fox News reports that the supernova was 200 times more powerful than any other recorded supernova. It was first detected in June by telescopes in Chile. First glimpses revealed a powerful stellar explosion but the possibility that it could be a hypernova was confirmed when astronomers estimated that the star could be about 3.8 light-years from Earth.
The explosion has been named ASASSN-15lh after the All Sky Automated Survey for Supernovae, the exercise that revealed the explosion, according to Scientific American. The explosion is three times brighter than the brightest supernova ever recorded.
Analysis of the event revealed that brightness of the explosion cannot be matched by the Sun in more than 10 billion years and at its peak shone 20 times brighter than all stars put together in Milky Way.
Astrophysicists are still searching for theories to explain the event. Some plausible ones include a magnetar which could have released enormous amounts of energy through its magnetized wind. A magnetar is a neutron star with a powerful magnetic field. The authors who described the finding, are not sure yet.
"The explosion's mechanism and power source remain shrouded in mystery because all known theories meet serious challenges in explaining the immense amount of energy ASASSN-15lh has radiated," astronomer Subo Dong said according to Business Insider.