VY Canis Majoris

By Brody Folkerts

Fun Facts

VY Canis Majoris is part of the constellation Canis Major. It's the biggest star known to man, but that doesn't mean it is the biggest star in the universe. It's so big that if it was placed where our Sun is, Jupiter would be engulfed by the monster. VY Canis Majoris is located about 5,000 light years away from us and is expected to die in 100,000 years.

What happens when VY CMa dies?

VY Canis Majoris is classified as a Class M Hypergiant. Evidence states that VY CMa will create a supernova, turn into a neutron star and eventually create a black hole. Theorists have stated they think VY CMa will create something that has only happened a few times; a hypernova. A hypernova has the same effects as a supernova, but a hypernova is exceptionally larger than a supernova.

Characteristics about VY CMa

VY CMa has a surface temperature of about 3000K and burns a bright red color. VY CMa is about 450,000 times more luminous than our sun. It was discovered in 1801 by a French astronomer, Joseph Jerome Lefrancois deLalande. VY CMa is a single star system unlike most massive stars that are binary or multiple star systems.