A small, bright object that first flared up in June could be the brightest, most powerful supernova ever spotted by astronomers. If it is indeed a supernova, the object ASASSN-15lh pushes the upper limits of what scientists thought exploding stars were capable of. And if it's not a super-charged supernova, it may be something even more mysterious.
The brilliant cosmic explosion – 200 times more powerful than the average supernova, 570 billion times brighter than our sun, and 20 times brighter than all the stars in our Milky Way Galaxy combined even though it only spans 10 miles across – is described in a study published Thursday in Science. I...Read more