Astronomers have found the fastest rotating star yet – a giant star located over 160.000 light years away, which spins 100 times faster than the Sun.
The star, which was nicknamed VFTS 102 is quickly approaching the point where, if it will spin any faster, it will be ripped apart by its own centrifugal force. Based on their observations and their experience, astrophysicists believe the star was rejected from a by-stellar system, after its companion turned supernova and blew it away.
The star is also 25 times more massive than our Sun, and 100.000 more bright. It’s also moving much, much faster than anything surrounding it.
“The remarkable rotation speed and the unusual motion compared to the surrounding stars led us to wonder if this star had an unusual early life,” study lead author Philip Dufton of Queen’s University Belfast in Northern Ireland, said in a statement. “It was suspicious.”
In order to test their theories and see if the star was indeed ejected via a supernova explosion, scientists will have Hubble make more measurements and will either confirm or infirm the theory not long from now.