The stars were discovered in two clusters – NGC 3603 and RMC 136a – and researchers used a “combination of instruments on the European Southern Observatory’s Very Large Telescope, in addition to archival data from the Hubble Space Telescope, to study the stellar nurseries”. With this combination of tools, they were able to discover some almost scary details about R136a1, the most massive of the stars:
Its current mass is approximately 265 solar masses, and its estimated birth weight was as much as 320 times that of our sun. R136a1 also has the highest luminosity of any star found to date – nearly 10 million times greater than the sun.
I can almost feel my skin turning red just reading that. [Space]