In a timely occurrence, a new star appeared on Christmas day when a star exploded as a nova – a smaller version of a supernova. And Slooh Observatory broadcast live views of the nova and its parent galaxy, which you can watch in the video at the end of this article.
The star, found in the Triangulum Galaxy, was discovered by amateur astronomer Emmanuel Conseil using the Slooh.com telescopes in the Canary Islands on Christmas Day. “The object was there on my images on Christmas Day, but not there on the 24th,” Conseil said in a statement. “It's pretty new!”
Several other amateur astronomers confirmed the discovery, and now more observations will be needed to work out what kind of nova it is.
A nova is a stellar explosion caused when a white dwarf star robs a companion of material and explodes, igniting a runaway nuclear fusion reaction. The nova itself lasts for a couple of weeks.
Check out the replay of the show below for more information on this intriguing discovery.