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‘Death Star’ found pointing at Earth

March 9, 2008

‘Death Star’ found pointing at Earth : Nature News  Annotated


‘Death Star’ found pointing at Earth

Star-system explosion could threaten life on Earth.

The clear dust spiral shows that a beam from this star would be aimed at Earth.The clear dust spiral shows that a beam from this star would be aimed at Earth.Courtesy of the researchers

Astronomers have spotted a binary star system that could collapse to produce a massive gamma-ray burst at any point during the next few hundred thousand years — and it is pointing at Earth.

The binary star system WR 104, some 8,000 light-years from Earth in the Sagittarius constellation, is made up of two stars that complete an orbit of one another every 8 months. Both stars are massive and have strong solar winds that spew out material, resulting in a spiralling trail of hot gas and dust.

Peter Tuthill at the University of Sydney in Australia and his

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