Discovery of Eight Super-Hot Stars with Southern African Large Telescope

Astronomers using the Southern African Large Telescope (SALT) have identified eight of the hottest stars known to exist, each with surfaces hotter than 100,000 degrees Celsius. This discovery was made possible using the largest single optical telescope in the Southern Hemisphere, with a 10m x 11m mirror, situated at the NRF-managed facility, the South African Astronomical Observatory (NRF- SAAO). The work has been published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

The researchers conducted a survey of helium-rich subdwarf stars, leading to the discovery of several white dwarf and pre-white dwarf stars with surface temperatures hotter than any previously observed. The hottest of these stars boasts a surface temperature of 180,000 degrees Celsius, over 30 times hotter than the surface of the Sun.

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