Scientists resolve the mystery of magnetar formation

A team of researchers headed by Simon Clark reported that they have found the “runaway starlet” that caused the Milk Way Galaxy’s only magnetar—a infrequent type of neutron starlet that is very dense and enormously magnetic—in the starlet cluster Westerlund 1 to form. They suggested that the magnetar formed through the interactions of two very massive starlets orbiting one another in a binary system so compact that it would fit within the orbit of the Earth around the Sun. While looking for runaway starlets that might have gone out of orbit by the supernova explosion, they found the starlet Westerlund 1-5 [Two] that caused the birth of the magnetar.

Read more in Scientific American.

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