NO ALIEN MEGASTRUCTURE AROUND MYSTERIOUS ‘TABBY’S STAR’, STUDY SHOWS

A team of more than 200 researchers, including Penn State Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics Assistant Professor Jason Wright and led by Louisiana State University’s Tabetha Boyajian, is one step closer to solving the mystery behind the “most mysterious star in the universe.” KIC 8462852, or “Tabby’s Star,” nicknamed after Boyajian, is otherwise an ordinary star, about 50 percent bigger and 1,000 degrees hotter than the Sun, and about than 1,000 light years away. However, it has been inexplicably dimming and brightening sporadically like no other.
Several theories abound to explain the star’s unusual light patterns, including that an alien megastructure is orbiting the star.
The mystery of Tabby’s Star is so compelling that more than 1,700 people donated over $100,000 through a Kickstarter campaign in support of dedicated ground-based telescope time to observe and gather more data on the star through a network of telescopes around the world.
As a result, a body of data collected by Boyajian and colleagues in partnership with the Las Cumbres Observatory is now available in a new paper in The Astrophysical Journal Letters./dailyaccord
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