News of the WeekAstronomy

If It Quarks Like a Star, It Must Be ... Strange?

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Science  12 Apr 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5566, pp. 238-239
DOI: 10.1126/science.296.5566.238b

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Astronomers may have discovered two of the strangest objects in the universe. Observations by the orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory imply that stars named RXJ1856 and 3C58 are too small to be familiar neutron stars but might instead be a more exotic breed composed of degenerate quark matter. If so, the two would be the first credible examples of so-called strange stars, presenting theorists with a chance to pin down some of the properties of exotic matter.