The bright red glowing mass of gas and dust in the picture here is actually a two baby “proto” stars, just growing up.
NASA released a time lapse video of the star, taken from the Hubble space telescope and the Spitzer Space Telescope between Dec. 3, 2010 and Dec. 26. We’ve giffed it for you, below.
They noticed that every 25.34 days, the object, designated LRLL 54361, lets out a burst of light which travels through the surrounding dust and gas, lighting it up. The light echos through the gas cloud, looking as if it is moving outward from the center.
This is an extremely rare event — researchers have only seen it twice before. And this one is the most powerful yet. They aren’t sure exactly what is causing the strobe-light effect, but think it could be an interaction between two new stars in the region.
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