"Vampire" Stars Found in Heart of Our Galaxy—A First
Cannibals may steal from other stars—resulting in strangely youthful appearance.
(See Milky Way pictures in National Geographic magazine.)
Called blue stragglers, these cannibal stars have been spotted in other parts of the Milky Way. They seem to lag in age next to the other stars with which they formed—appearing hotter, and thus younger and bluer.
Astronomers suspect blue stragglers look so youthful because they've stolen hydrogen fuel from other stars, perhaps after colliding into their victims.
(See related picture: "'Cannibal' Galaxy Gets Fatter.")
These cannibal stars are routinely found in dense star clusters, where stars have many chances to feed off each other. Now, however, scientists have found blue stragglers in the Milky Way's galactic bulge, a dense region of stars and gas surrounding the