Researchers found a mysterious star in the Milky Way — and it's not from our galaxy
- According to a study published in Nature Astronomy, scientists have come across a new star called J1124 + 4535 and it’s a little different to other stars in our galaxy.
- The chemical composition of stars formed close to each other is usually similar, in that they contain common elements.
- However, there is no correspondence between the composition of the “new” star and its neighbors in the Milky Way.
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The Milky Way is home to a lot of stars but, according to Chinese researchers, we may have found an unusual one that doesn’t appear to have originated there.
According to a study published inNature Astronomy, scientists have found a star called J1124 + 4535 and it’s different to other stars in our galaxy — its chemical composition suggests it once belonged to a dwarf galaxy that later merged with the Milky Way.
The star is found within a constellation known as the Great Bear, made up of seven bright stars.
The Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fiber Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST) showed that the foreign star contains small amounts of magnesium.
Further studies confirmed the findings and also point to increased europium content.
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In dwarf galaxies, stars take much longer to form, so their magnesium to iron ratio is different.
The chemical composition of stars formed close to each other is usually similar, in that they contain common elements.
However, there is no correspondence between the composition of the “new” star and its neighbors in the Milky Way. As a result, the researchers have suggested that J1124 + 4535 must have formed at a different location.
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Research shows that galaxies like the Milky Way can expand and that they can absorb other smaller galaxies around them, so this could be a possible explanation.
The theory seems plausible, as astronomers also found groups of stars originating from dwarf galaxies around the Milky Way.
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