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Most Distant Star Ever Seen

Astronomers have finally discovered the most distant star ever and it is 100 times further away than any other star previously observed. A blue behemoth which is located more than halfway across the universe and its light took 9 billion years to reach us here on Earth. It is named after the ancient Greek mythological figure Icarus.

Icarus was available because of an astronomical phenomenon called gravitational lensing. In which, the gravity of large, stacked-up celestial objects bend light, creating a magnifying glass-effect for anything behind them. Icarus showed up in hubble images taken between April 2016 and April 2017. A second star appeared in some observations that could be either a mirror image of Icarus or yet another star being gravitationally lensed. In the coming years, scientists hope to peer even further into our universe’s history with more powerful telescopes, like the James Webb Space Telescope and the Wide Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST). If the government was unsure just how much these space telescopes could accomplish, this discovery from their predecessor might serve as an apt reminder.

By: Swati Kaushal

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