What are the biggest known stars in terms of size and mass?
The biggest known star in terms of size is UY Scuti, with a radius around 1,700 times larger than the sun. The biggest known star in terms of mass is R136a1, with a mass around 265 times greater than the sun. However, both of these stars are located in other galaxies and have been inferred through observation, so there may be other stars that are even larger and more massive that have yet to be discovered.
UY Scuti is a red supergiant star located in the Scutum constellation, around 9,500 light years away from Earth. It is one of the largest and most luminous stars known, with a radius estimated to be around 1,700 times larger than the sun. This means that if UY Scuti were placed in the center of our solar system, its outer surface would extend beyond the orbit of Jupiter. It is also relatively cool, with a surface temperature of around 3,500 degrees Kelvin.
UY Scuti is also a variable star, which means its brightness changes over time. It has been observed to fluctuate by about 15% over a period of about two years. Despite its large size and brightness, UY Scuti is not visible to the naked eye due to its distance from Earth.
UY Scuti is also a very luminous star, emitting around half a million times more energy than the sun, this is due to the fact that it is near the end of its life and it’s burning hydrogen into helium at a very high rate.
It is also considered a very rare type of star and it is not well understood how such massive stars form and evolve.
R136a1 is a Wolf-Rayet star located in the R136 star cluster, within the Large Magellanic Cloud galaxy, which is around 170,000 light years away from Earth.
It is the most massive star known, with a mass estimated to be around 265 times greater than the sun. This makes it an extremely luminous and hot star, with a surface temperature of around 50,000 degrees Kelvin.
Wolf-Rayet stars are extremely rare and short-lived, they are massive and hot stars that are shedding material at a very high rate due to strong stellar winds, they are also known to be at a very advanced stage of their life, near the end of their lives. R136a1 is thought to be nearing the end of its life and is expected to explode as a supernova in the near future.
Due to its massive size and high luminosity, R136a1 is also a powerful source of ultraviolet radiation and is responsible for ionizing the surrounding gas and creating the complex structures seen in the R136 star cluster.
It is also considered a very rare type of star and not well understood how such massive stars form and evolve. The existence of R136a1 and other similar massive stars in the R136 cluster challenges current theories of massive star formation.
Answer generated by AI @ ChatGPT
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