20 May 2008


Posted by Ryan Anderson

A little star with a  BIG flare

Image credit: Casey Reed/NASA

Apparently the tiny little red dwarf star EV Lacertae has quite a temper. On April 25, astronomers detected that this little dim star underwent a colossal flare and became brighter than the sun. Bad Astronomy has the full story, but I felt the need to share this mostly because of the absolutely awesome artist’s rendition of the flare above. I’ve seen a lot of space artwork, and most of it is cool but doesn’t really stand out. This image does. Whether it is a realistic representation doesn’t matter so much, but it really looks to me like an extremely high-energy explosion on the surface of a small but active star.