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CXO J164710.2-455216

The neutron star and magentar lies within the open super star cluster Westerlund 1. This cluster contains stars with up to 40 solar masses, which were all born nearly at the same time. Therefore the progenitor star must have had a mass of more than 40 times the Sun.
One would have expected that such a star, when exploding, leaves behind a Black Hole. Why 'only' a neutron star evolved no one knows yet.
In September 2005 the magnetar suffered a seismic quake and, following that, an X-ray burst.

Constellation: Ara
Age of Westerlund 1: 3.5 - 5 million years
Distance: 17 000 light-years
Mass: 2 * Sun
Diameter: 19 km

Back: List of Special Stars part 2
    CXO J164710.2-455216
Westerlund 1 in X-rays. In visible light CXO J164710.2-455216 can't be seen.
Photo: Chandra

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