Imagine flying to the moon in a mere 5-minutes. To do so, you’d have to be travelling at the rate of 746 miles per second or 2.7 million miles per hour. This is faster than any star in our galaxy had ever been observed to travel – until the hyper-velocity compact star known as US 708 was recognized by scientists to be zipping by so quickly it should escape the gravitational force of the Milky Way in just about 25 million years. But what set it streaking across the Cosmos?
The star was spotted in 2005 by Dr. Eugene Magnier, an astronomer at the University of Hawaii at Mano and his colleagues. But it was only in more recent years that the researchers used the Keck II and Pan-STARRS1 telescopes in Hawaii to measure the star’s hypervelocity and trajectory.