Only a smidge bigger than the moon, a newfound white dwarf is the smallest of its kind known.
The white dwarf, a type of remnant left behind when certain stars peter out, has a radius of about 2,100 kilometers, researchers report June 30 in Nature. That’s remarkably close to the moon’s approximately 1,700-kilometer radius. Most white dwarfs are closer to the size of Earth, which has a radius of about 6,300 kilometers.
The white dwarf’s small girth means, counterintuitively, that it is also one of the most massive known objects of its kind, at about 1.3 times the sun’s mass.