New Zodiac: Inside Ophiuchus, Astronomers Discover Runaway Star

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Reines / NASA

It seems that the new kid in town is already causing trouble.

The constellation Ophiuchus most recently made headlines when some scientists said they thought it should be added to the annual Zodiac calendar. Now NASA has announced that they’ve captured images of a runaway star, called Zeta, speeding through the very same cluster of stars. Cue another round of Ophiuchus headlines.

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The star, officially dubbed Zeta Ophiuchi,  is thought to be “a very massive hot blue star that is 65,000 times brighter than our own Sun and 20 times its size,” according to the Telegraph. Also, the star happens to be hurtling 54,000 mph under Ophiuchus since another star  it once orbited exploded in a “violent supernova, flinging Zeta out into deep space.”

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NASA caught the images of the star’s shock waves with the Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer known as WISE. And though the star is so massive compared to our sun, it’s life expectancy is much shorter. While the sun has a lifespan of 10 billion years, Zeta Ophiuchi is expected to meet its end in a supernova after a mere 8 million years.  (via the Telegraph)