Physics Professor and CSU Professor Elliott Horch is one of a team of astronomers who recently photographed the largest star in the universe. An article in the New Haven Register explains that the astronomers photographed R136, a bright cluster of stars in the southern constellation Dorado, and were able to produce the sharpest images created to date. They used technology developed at Southern to do so.
To maximize the power of the Gemini South Zorro telescope — one of the largest telescopes in the world, located in the mountains of Chile — the team used a camera for which Horch designed the optics that is currently on the Gemini South.
The study of this cluster of stars helps astronomers understand the extreme upper limits of star formation, which in turn contributes to the understanding the lifecycle of stars and the evolution of the universe, the article says.
According to the article, “Horch hopes that he can share this exciting field with students at Southern Connecticut State University where he has taught for 15 years. He says that the physics department has been growing rapidly and competing with the likes of Yale, UConn, and Wesleyan in astronomy research.
“‘This is one area where Southern is quite strong,’ said Horch. ‘We’re right there in the mix of the top schools for doing physics and astronomy.'”
Read the article, “The most massive star in the universe was recently photographed by an SCSU astronomer” (by Vincent Gabrielle, Sept. 26, 2022)