The biggest explosion of our time

The biggest explosion of our time

A space explosion first detected in 2020 at the Palomar Observatory in California is giving scientists cause for joy. It’s the biggest explosion they’ve ever seen.

The explosion, known as “AT2021lwx”, was discussed in many international media, incl Sky News.

A pioneering discovery in the Milky Way


– We came across this quite by accident, it was highlighted by our algorithm when we were looking for some kind of supernova.

So said astronomer and research leader Philip Wiseman, from the University of Southampton.

Such astronomical events are rare in themselves. The fact that the eruption lasted for more than three years is amazing.

– Most supernovae and tidal disturbances only last a couple of months before they disappear. It’s very unusual for them to star for more than three years, Wiseman says.

Researchers punch: - I've never seen anything like it

Researchers punch: – I’ve never seen anything like it


A supernova is a massive explosion when the core of a star collapses Large Norwegian Encyclopedia. When a star is torn apart by the gravitational pull of a black hole, it is called tidal disruption.

He adds that such events could be the key to understanding how the centers of galaxies may change over time.

The “AT2021lwx” space explosion was supposed to occur a full eight billion light-years away and, according to Weismann, should have released 100 times more energy than the Sun would emit during its 10-billion-light-year lifetime.

The star swallowed it

The star swallowed it


AT2021lwx is believed to have appeared when a massive cloud of gas was swallowed up by a black hole after exiting orbit. The gas cloud, which was swallowed up, created a large, dusty “doughnut” around the black hole.

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On the other hand, a space explosion is not the most powerful light phenomenon that scientists have witnessed. The gamma ray burst was detected last year, and it only lasted a few minutes, unlike “AT2021lwx” which is still going on.

Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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