A huge collision between two stars some 1,800 light-years away could add a bright new object to our night sky, say scientists – though this temporary star will only be visible for two or three years. This is the first time experts have tried to forecast a cosmic explosion like this, and the researchers say there’s usually only a “one-in-a-million chance” of being able to predict a new star before it actually appears.

Astronomer Larry Molnar and his team from Calvin College in Michigan have been keeping a close eye on a binary star called KIC 9832227, which is actually two stars orbiting each other. In this case, we’re dealing with a contact binary, where both stars share parts of the same atmosphere, like two peanuts in a shell. READ MORE