Solar System Chatter

Eta’s Not Alone Anymore

NASA, ESA, and the Hubble SM4 ERO Team
NASA, ESA, and the Hubble SM4 ERO Team
Eta Carinae is “one of the brightest, most massive, and most puzzling stars in the Milky Way,” and until recently, entirely unique. A team has now found five similar objects after going through archival data from NASA’s Spitzer and Hubble space telescopes. The short-lived outbursts from this class of variable star makes them very difficult to find, but scientists from Ohio State University and NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center developed a “fingerprint” in optical and infrared wavelengths that made the search much easier. The team hopes to discover even more about Eta Carinae now that there are a set of “Eta twins” to study together.

Heather Goss is the Departments Editor at Air & Space.

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