The space explosion that was noticed in 2018 has been classified by the astronomers now. Initially, it was thought to be originated much closer to us, which is not. Recent discoveries have shown that it is a new class of giant space explosion.
This explosion is powerful and fast, releasing a large amount of matter into space. This space explosion is named as the new class Fast Blue Optical Transients or FBOTs by the astronomers.
The 2018 event named “the Cow” (AT2018cow) was found to be a galaxy 200 million light-years away, which was a surprise given its exceptional brightness. Since then, it’s been outbursted by two even bigger explosions of the same kind, bringing the total of known FBOTs to three.
The other two were found in archival data from visible-light all-sky surveys.
“When I reduced the data, I thought I made a mistake,” said astronomer Anna Ho of Caltech, who led the Koala study. “The ‘Koala’ resembled the ‘Cow’ but the radio emission was ten times brighter – as bright as a gamma-ray burst!”
CSS161010 was even more jaw-dropping. The follow-up observations in radio and X-ray wavelengths revealed that the object ejected vast amounts of stellar material into space at a whopping 55 percent of the speed of light.
“This was unexpected,” said astronomer Deanne Coppejans of Northwestern University, who led the study on CSS161010, and is apparently a master of understatement.
“We know of energetic stellar explosions that can eject material at almost the speed of light, specifically gamma-ray bursts, but they only launch a small amount of mass – about 1 millionth the mass of the Sun.
“CSS161010 launched 1 to 10 percent the mass of the Sun to relativistic speeds – evidence that this is a new class of transient!”
All three explosions share similarities. They look a lot like supernova explosions, but they flare up and fade again incredibly quickly – way more quickly than normal supernovae. They’re also incredibly hot, which gives the light a bluer tint, compared to other supernovae.