Diamond Rakhmayanti DewiCNBC Indonesia
Tuesday, 16/05/2023 21:35 WIB
Jakarta, CNBC Indonesia – Astronomers have just witnessed the biggest explosion in space. The explosive event, labeled AT2021lwx, was observed to be ten times brighter than any supernova that has ever existed.
Quoting Space, Tuesday (16/5/2023), an explosion that occurs when a massive star dies. While the supernova explosion lasted only a few months, this explosive event has been showing signs of emergence for at least the last three years.
AT2021lwx is also three times brighter than the light emitted when a star is ripped apart and eaten by a supermassive black hole, an event known as a “tidal disruption event” or “TDE”.
The explosion was about 8 billion light years from Earth and occurred when the universe was only 6 billion years old.
AT2021lwx was first spotted by the Zwicky Transient Facility in California in 2020 and then ‘captured’ by the Hawaii-based Asteroid Terrestrial-impact Last Alert System (ATLAS).
The two systems are designed to survey the night sky for astronomical events whose brightness changes rapidly over time, also known as “transients”.
This change in brightness can indicate a supernova or gamma ray burst (GRB) far in the universe or something closer to home such as a comet or asteroid.
Although spotted by the facility three years ago, the scale and strength of AT2021lwx’s explosion was unknown until now.
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