When scientists looked at a cluster of ancient stars, they noticed a few that appeared younger than the rest. These stars are the same age as the others, yet they look younger. Like a vampire, these stars suck the life from others.
New observations from the Hubble Space Telescope have revealed the hidden hosts feeding vampire-like blue straggler stars, strange objects that appear to stay uncannily young-looking instead of growing into old red giant stars.
When an aging star exhausts most of its fuel, it balloons outward into a huge red giant. But in a cluster of stars that formed at the same time, some will look eerily young: While the stars' contemporaries are bulky and cooler, they remain trim with a hotter, bluer light as if they're getting infusions of new fuel. So blue straggler stars get their name because they "straggle" behind the typical star life cycle.