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The VISIR instrument on ESO’s VLT captured this stunning image of a newly-discovered massive binary star system. Nicknamed Apep after an ancient Egyptian deity, it could be the first gamma-ray burst progenitor to be found in our galaxy. Apep’s stellar winds have created the dust cloud surrounding the system, which consists of a binary star with a fainter companion. With 2 Wolf-Rayet stars orbiting each other in the binary, the serpentine swirls surrounding Apep are formed by the collision of two sets of powerful stellar winds, which create the spectacular dust plumes seen in the image. The reddish pinwheel in this image is data from the VISIR instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT), and shows the spectacular plumes of dust surrounding Apep. The blue sources at the centre of the image are a triple star system — which consists of a binary star system and a companion single star bound together by gravity. Though only two star-like objects are visible in the image, the lower source is in fact an unresolved binary Wolf-Rayet star. The triple star system was captured by the NACOadaptive optics instrument on the VLT. Credit:ESO/Callingham et al.

Cosmic Serpent

The VISIR instrument on ESO’s Very Large Telescope has captured this stunning image of a newly discovered massive triple star system. Nicknamed Apep after...
An international team of astronomers using the VIMOS instrument of ESO’s Very Large Telescope have uncovered a colossal structure in the early Universe. This galaxy proto-supercluster — which they nickname Hyperion — was unveiled by new measurements and a complex examination of archive data. This is the largest and most massive structure yet found at such a remote time and distance — merely 2 billion years after the Big Bang. This visualization shows Hyperion and is based on real data. Credit: ESO/L. Calçada & Olga Cucciati et al.

Largest Galaxy Proto-Supercluster Found

An international team of astronomers using the VIMOS instrument of ESO’s Very Large Telescope have uncovered a titanic structure in the early Universe. This...
Supermassive Black Hole in Infant Universe

Supermassive Black Hole in Infant Universe

A team of astronomers including MIT scientists has recently discovered the most distant supermassive black hole ever observed. The black hole sits in the focal point...
ALMA Discovers Cold Dust Around Nearest Star

ALMA Discovers Cold Dust Around Nearest Star

Alma observatory in Chile has recently discovered cold dust around the closest star, Proxima Centauri to the Solar System. It suggests that the glow coming...
Scientists Detect Comets Outside our Solar System

Scientists Detect Comets Outside our Solar System

MIT scientists along with amateur astronomers have captured the dusty tails of six exocomets orbiting around a faint star 800 light years from Earth. These comets...
Revealing Galactic Secrets of Fornax Galaxy Cluster

Revealing Galactic Secrets of Fornax Galaxy Cluster

Astronomers at ESO’s Paranal Observatory by using the VLT Survey Telescope (VST) have captured the monster image of the Fornax Galaxy Cluster. Scientists believe that...

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