Oldest Known Star Older Than The Universe?

Oldest Known Star Older Than The Universe?


Okay, this can't be right. How can a star be older than the Universe? It's clearly not right but this star found in our Galaxy is the oldest known star. The star has been imaged by Hubble and due to its properties including the spectral mass, luminosity and composition it has been aged at 14.46 ± 0.8 billion years old. The Universe was aged as 13.77 ± 0.06 billion years old. The margin of error does allow the star to have formed after the Big Bang but as you can see it would have formed shortly afterwards.

Named unexcitedly HD 140283 this subgiant star is only 190.1 light years from us and is a visitor to our Galaxy. The star probably belongs to the ancient stars that encircle the Milky Way and is just passing through our galaxy during it's orbit.

Image credit: Digitized Sky Survey (DSS), STScI/AURA, Palomar/Caltech, and UKSTU/AAO

How to Find it:

If you want to observe it, it has a magnitude of 7.2 and can be found in Libra. It's position has been marked on the chart below. You'll need binoculars or a telescope to see it.


Click image to enlarge.

Related Posts: Observing the Night Sky

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