Larry Sessions, a columnist for Earth & Sky, has suggested in his blog that the gamma-ray event whose radiation reached us a few hours before Arthur C. Clarke died, and which occurred 7.5 billion light-years away, be named the Clarke Event. Even the faintest stars visible to the eye are merely hundreds or thousands of light-years distant, all well within our own Milky Way Galaxy. But staring toward the northern constellation Bootes on March 19th, even without binoculars or telescope you still could have witnessed a faint, brief, flash of light from this gamma-ray burst. The source of that burst has been discovered to lie over halfway across the Universe. The Gamma Ray Burst now holds the distinction of the most distant object that could be seen by the unaided eye and the intrinsically brightest object ever detected, the cosmic explosion is estimated to have been over 2.5 million times more luminous than the brightest known supernova.
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