When astronomers can’t understand the Universe, they assume it has something to do with the never seen before dark matter. If a system doesn’t behave as expected, then it should be dying. We, people, can’t accept that we don’t know everything, and hope to find out. We need to judge and make assumptions. That’s the case with rebel Terzan 5 CX1 binary star, whose behavior has driven scientists both amazed and mad with its changing identity.
First, it looked like a binary system. That was in 2003. Then, from 2009 until 2014, it behaved like a pulsar, and the system was suddenly ten times dimmer in X-rays observations. Two years later, it got bored of being a pulsar flashing bright radio waves in millisecond pulses and got back at being a binary star. That was it for the astronomer! The only thing that could explain this is that the star in the system is living a dramatic, prolonged death.
Is this binary star dying or not?
If the dark matter can be believed to exist without any physical proof, why can’t that from the above be the scenario for the star in Terzan 5 CX1 system? Or maybe it suffers from multiple personalities. It’s part of a globular cluster of stars called Terzan 5, in the Gemini or Sagittarius constellation, for heavens! Gemini and Sagittarius are both double zodiac signs. It is possible!
The known evolution from a low-mass X-ray binary star to a millisecond pulsar should take thousands of years. Terzan 5 CX1 did it in a few years. So, it did that too fast. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s dying. This star isn’t even the first to do that. Some other three stars had similar behaviors, and they are not dead yet either, so it is still a presumption that it is a death ‘ritual.’ Maybe Terzan 5 CX1 is more than just an object at 19,000 light-years away from Earth useful for us to understand a star’s dying process.