(ORDO NEWS) — A trio of researchers from the University of Tokyo have discovered that data from meteorological satellites can be used to study the stars.
In their paper, Daisuke Taniguchi, Kazuya Yamazaki, and Shinsuke Uno describe a study of the 2019 Betelgeuse dimming by analyzing data from the Himawari-8 meteorological satellite.
In 2019, Betelgeuse, a red supergiant star, dimmed in brightness, an event dubbed by some in the space community as the Great Dimming.
And while some conditioned this by the fact that Betelgeuse was about to go supernova, while others, in denial, insisted on the relationship of dimming with interference from a dust cloud, although they allowed a decrease in the brightness of part or even the entire star.
In this new work, the researchers noted that the satellite records infrared data and transmits it to earth stations 24 hours a day.
They also noted that the satellite was sent so far into space that it was able to record the weather for the entire surface of the planet, as well as some of the stars in the background.
The researchers received satellite data from 2017-2021 and analyzed it for Betelgeuse images. They found that they were able to obtain data on this star once a day for all the years they studied.
After analyzing the available information, it was found that the temperature of the star decreased by about 140 degrees Celsius.
The scientists also found signs of dust obscuring the view, so their analysis confirms that the cause of the fading may be interference associated with dust clouds that enveloped the satellite at the time of the image.
Their work shows that data from meteorological satellites can be a valuable resource, as they not only collect information more regularly than traditional ground-based telescopes, but also provide cleaner views while orbiting the Earth‘s atmosphere.
Contact us: [email protected]