Powerful bursts and explosions of incredible power are not uncommon in deep space. But sometimes the sources of these events remain mysterious. Scientists recently recorded a giant explosion about 130 million light years from Earth.
The energy surge was recorded by NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory. The power of the explosion was enormous. Astronomers compare this event to a sound shock when an airplane overcomes a sound barrier.
“Something mysterious is happening in the universe right now,” Edo Berger, a professor of astronomy at Harvard University and one of the scientists who discovered the new space event, told the reporters of Mashable.
Earlier, such explosions were caused by a colossal collision of two neutron stars — the densest objects in the universe. About 3.5 years later, something more powerful caused another mysterious explosion with the release of an incredible amount of energy.
In a new study published in The Astrophysical Journal Letters, astronomers suggest two possible scenarios that could explain this event. None of them have ever been observed before, said Aprajita Hajela, an astronomer and graduate student at the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Northwestern University who led the study.
Two causes of space explosion
The first explanation is the Kilonova star. This is an astronomical event that occurs in binary stellar systems when two neutron stars merge or a neutron star merges with a black hole. Kilonovas have a great importance to the universe and our lives. Astronomers suspect that such explosions formed important elements and metals such as gold and platinum. After a huge explosion of the Kilonova star, the “fragments” expand into space, creating a shock wave. The explosion heatі everything around, both gases and stardust. Kilonova’s glow can be detected millions of light-years away.
The second explanation is the birth of a black hole due to the fusion of neutron stars. During this process, a huge amount of energy is released. Scientists have probably recorded the source of this recently discovered energy from outer space.
It should be mentioned about a previous discovery of a powerful meteorite explosion that ruined an ancient culture 1,500 years ago.