Now, thanks to the Kepler Space Telescope you can see it with your own eyes!
This phenomenon – know as a “shock breakout” – begins “when the internal furnace of a star runs out of nuclear fuel causing its core to collapse as gravity takes over”, states NASA.
This is the result of an impressive team work. Peter Garnavich, an astrophysics professor at the University of Notre Dame in Indiana, led an international science team which “analyzed light captured by Kepler every 30 minutes over a three-year period from 500 distant galaxies, searching some 50 trillion stars”! As they were “hunting for signs of massive stellar death explosions know as supernovae”, this is a major discovery since the star caught on film is called a red supergiant star and it is 20,000 times brighter than our sun!