The Hubble Space Telescope has taken over 1.5 million observations over the years. One of them is the breathtaking image sequence of V838 Monocerotis (V838 Mon).
Called a light echo, the expanding illumination of interstellar dust around the star has been revealing remarkable structures in the dusty cloud ever since the star suddenly brightened in January 2002. V838 Mon temporarily became 600,000 times brighter than our Sun, until it faded in April 2002. It was one of the brightest stars in the entire Milky Way. The reason for the eruption is still unclear.
In this video, Dr. Padi Boyd explains this fascinating piece of history, teaching us some of the interesting science behind this famous Hubble image.
Video Credit: Hubble Space Telescope Animation Credit: ESA/Hubble (M. Kornmesser & L. L. Christensen), A. Fujii, Robert Gendler, Digitized Sky Survey 2, Panther Observatory, Steve Cannistra, Michael Pierce, Robert Berrington (Indiana University), Nigel Sharp, Mark Hanna (NOAO)/WIYN/NSF
Music Credit: "Transcode" by Lee Groves [PRS], and Peter George Marett [PRS] via Universal Production Music
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