Once most stars reach the end of their life cycle, they’ll explode with a gleaming white-hot intensity, an event that’s often referred to by astronomers in the field as ‘going supernova.’
Space telescopes have picked up on supernovae before, and they can often outshine an entire galaxy in terms of brightness. On the other hand, predicting when stars will go supernova and determining their frequency in the universe are both somewhat challenging to do, as mother nature tends to be mysterious like that.
At the time of this writing, there are at least a dozen stars in close proximity that could potentially go supernova at any moment in time, with a particularly famous red supergiant called Betelgeuse being one of those. There’s no telling when it could finally go supernova, but experts suggest that it could happen in our lifetime or thousands of years from now.
One thing’s certain, however, and that’s that none of these stars are close enough to pose any threat to us when they do eventually go supernova. The only star we’d ever have to worry about is our own Sun, and it’s still got quite a long way to go before reaching that point…