Betelgeuse is one of the largest stars known to researchers, at over 1000 times larger than our own sun. But it has also lost huge amounts of mass over its lifetime. These new images suggest how this might be happening.
The new images are built out of only the sharpest, clearest pictures of the star. These sharp images are composited together to create one highly detailed image. The whole process is called "lucky imaging," and it has led to new information about how this star loses so much mass.
The picture shows large plume of gas jetting out from the star's surface. The plume is almost as large as our solar system, and it could help explain where so much of Betelgeuse's mass is going. It also makes for a really beautiful image.
Sharpest views of Betelgeuse reveal how supergiant stars lose mass [via EurekaAlert]
(Image: ESO/L. Calçada)