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What massive stars do right before they explode is a big unsolved mystery, it's rare to see this kind of star right before it explodes into a supernova.
When it exploded, it seemed like a very normal hydrogen-free supernova, there was nothing outstanding about this. But the progenitor star didn't match what we know about this type of supernova.
Astronomers have suspected that stars undergo violent eruptions or death throes in the years before we see supernovae, this star's discovery provides some of the most direct evidence ever found that stars experience catastrophic eruptions, which cause them to lose mass before an explosion. If the star was having these eruptions, then it likely expelled its hydrogen several decades before it exploded.
Unlike its normal behavior right after it exploded, the hydrogen interaction revealed it's kind of this oddball supernova, but it's exceptional that we were able to find its progenitor star in Hubble data. In four or five years, I think we will be able to learn more about what happened.
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