INNOVATION

There's A Rogue 'Mega Star' Disappearing And No One Knows Why

Is it aliens? We have questions.

05/10/2016 1:03 PM AEDT | Updated 05/10/2016 4:13 PM AEDT
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This star just isn't like the rest.

The 'Megastructure Star' has puzzled astrophysicists and everyday folk for over a year now, and the mystery is only getting deeper.

Star KIC 8462852, known more affectionately as 'Tabby's Star', captivated people when scientists noticed the star was dimming without any explanation.

So why's this weird? Well they've already concluded, this can't be due to natural causes... so naturally, cue the alien conspiracy theories.

"Speculation to explain KIC 8462852's dips in brightness has ranged from an unusually large group of comets orbiting the star to an alien megastructure," the Carnegie Institute said on their website.

"The erratic pattern of abrupt fading and re-brightening in KIC 8462852 is unlike that seen for any other star."

Researchers, Caltech's Ben Montet and Carnegie Institute's Joshua Simon, monitored the star over a four year period through NASA's Kepler space telescope and things have only gotten weirder.

Their findings show that over the first three years, Tabby's Star dimmed by almost 1 percent, it then dropped 2 percent over six months and remained at that level for the last six.

They then compared it to 500 others like it and found only a small fraction showed similar fading over the first three years, however none exhibited such a dramatic dimming in six months like Tabby's did.

"Our highly accurate measurements over four years demonstrate that the star really is getting fainter with time," Monet said.

"It is unprecedented for this type of star to slowly fade for years, and we don't see anything else like it in the Kepler data."

Scientists still can't figure out what's causing this star to go rogue but it's leaving the world fascinated -- with many people not letting go of the fact it could be aliens that are responsible for this...

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