Eta’s Not Alone Anymore
January 6th, 2016, 3:35PMEta 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.