(CNN)A young, bright star has been acting a little erratic lately. The star, Betelgeuse, is suddenly dimming. It may be a sign, astronomers say, that the star is about to explode. Another possibility is the red supergiant may just be going through a phase. Ed Guinan, an astronomy professor at Villanova University, was the lead author on a December 8 paper entitled “The Fainting of the Nearby Supergiant Betelgeuse.”He told CNN that Betelgeuse (pronounced: BAY-tel juice) been declining in brightness sharply since October, and was now about 2.5 times fainter than usual. Once the ninth brightest star in the sky, Betelgeuse has fallen now to about the 23rd brightest. Guinan and his colleagues have been closely observing the star for decades, with “continuous coverage since 1980,” he said. In the last half-century, the star has never dimmed so aggressively, and that could mean we’re on the verge of something extraordinary.”What causes the supernova is deep inside the star,” Guinan said. And because the star is so huge, it’s impossible to tell what’s going on so far down.
Original news by: Rayan Prior; Source: CNN