A star in our neighbourhood bears undeniable signs of sharing ancestral remains of massive stars from the Big Bang times.
Astronomers at the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan in Tokyo have seen a chemical composition in the star similar to what is believed to have existed during those times, says an online report in Science.
To study the universe's beginnings, astronomers have to look a billion miles away into a distant past.
The primordial soup that emerged during the Big Bang explosion now occupies the farthest realms of our expanding world. This calls for telescopes with uncanny vision.
But recent findings of chemical signatures from a nearby star indicate it was cooked from an earlier star which was massive and ancient, probably as old as the beginnings of the universe.
If confirmed, this would corroborate theories that early stars were so massive that they exploded most violently.
The Big Bang is believed to have happened 14 billion years ago producing only hydrogen, helium and little lithium which did not help the gas clouds cool.
Cooling requires heavier elements. Because the primordial gas clouds stayed warm, more gravity was needed to overwhelm the gas pressure and make them collapse, so they spawned massive stars, goes the theory.
Searching for 18 chemical elements in SDSS J0018-0939, a dim orange star in the constellation Cetus, the Tokyo astronomers found an abundance of atoms with more even atomic numbers than odd atomic numbers.
It was probably formed in a supernova explosion at least 10-100 times more violent than ordinarily seen.
Such a blast marks a star so hot where the photons (light particles) form pairs of electrons and anti-electrons, consequently exerting little outward pressure.
Gravity takes over and the collapse begins and leads to more heat triggering more nuclear reactions in a chain reaction that ends up in an explosion.
In this cauldron, helium nuclei (atomic number 2) bombarded one another to form nickel and other elements with even atomic numbers.