A stunning photo from NASA’s Galex space telescope: A dying star in the constellation Cetus, named Mira is swifting in the galaxy with a comet-like tail. Astronomers said they had never witnessed such a phenomenon and added: “The fact that Mira’s tail only glows with ultraviolet light might explain why other telescopes have missed it.”So what’s the lesson to be taken from this story? “Don’t be so confident as if you know and have seen everything. The universe has lots more mysteries for you to learn.”

clipped from news.bbc.co.uk

Galex image of Mira

A distant star that hurtles through space at extraordinary speeds has a huge, comet-like tail trailing in its wake, astronomers say.

The appendage, which measures a colossal 13 light years in length, was spotted by Nasa’s Galaxy Evolution Explorer (Galex) space telescope.
The researchers said that nothing like it had ever been spotted around a star.
They believe the star, known as Mira, will help them to study what happens as stars meet their demise.
Mira (also called Mira A) has captivated astronomers for more than 400 years.
It sits about 350 light-years from Earth in a constellation known as Cetus, and is accompanied in orbit by a smaller secondary star, called Mira B, forming a binary system.
Billions of years ago, Mira would have been much like our Sun, but as it now enters its death-throes it has swollen into a type of star known as a red giant.
Yet despite centuries of study, its spectacular tail had remained undetected.

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