This is a white super-giant star, this star is 185,000x brighter than the Sun, making it one bright stellar object indeed. This is the amazing Universe we live in. There are some strange objects out there that are stranger than we can imagine. Life could not exist around this super bright star, there would be too much radiation to enable life to thrive. We need sunlight to live but not that much. There is the hyper-giant star VY Canis Majoris that is 3,000,000,000 Kilometers in diameter. The Sun is 1,470,00 Kilometers in diameter, it is a minuscule speck compared to the massive bulk of Canis Majoris. There could have been stars that existed early on in the history of the Universe, but they would not have lived for very long. The super-giant stars that existed not too long after the big bang had temperatures at their cores approaching 200,000,000 degrees Celsius and this created carbon compounds essential to create our carbon based bodies. Otherwise life would not exist in the Universe. We have stars to thank for our existence as we are based on nuclear waste after all. Sure that is not a nice thing to say, but it is true.
The edges of the Universe are traveling away from us faster than the speed of light or C this means that we can not explore the whole Universe, it is larger than we think, we can only see out to 13.7 billion light years as before that there was nothing to emit light and therefore pointing a super powerful telescope, say with a 200 meter mirror at a distant part of space will not yield any better results than the Hubble telescope. That telescope would be better served looking at distant stars that have planets to see if they harbor life. Such a large telescope could be built in space in pieces and would be able to see distant planets and stars very effectively. There have been plans for a 30 metre telescope that could see extra-solar planets, but a 200 meter optical telescope would have amazing resolution and could see planets even further away. Using spectroscopy, you could analyze the light traveling through a planets atmosphere and see what it is composed of. That is what we should be spending money on, not blowing each other up.
There are many things in the Universe that could wipe out civilization as we know it, like a giant asteroid, or a large gamma ray burst directed at Earth. We could stop the former, but not the latter. There was an episode of Sliders where a pulsar swept over the Earth and killed all life except for some survivors that managed to escape through the wormhole. That was a good episode, but I am not sure if there are any pulsars close the the Earth that would endanger us. A pulsar is just a rotating Neutron star that is emitting a beam of electromagnetic radiation, this is a source of extremely powerful radiation. if one was close to an Earth like planet and it was shining on the planet like a lighthouse beacon, it would keep the planet nice and warm, but totally lifeless, even bacteria would not survive on a planet in those conditions. But I am sure that we do not have to worry about something like that happening. Sure the 2012 conspiracy nuts are saying that a dwarf star named Nibiru is coming in 2012, but it is 16, January 2012 now and if this object was really coming to Earth we would know it by now.
They are just making this up to sell books and DVD videos about the end times and rip off unsuspecting customers that would purchase this stuff. There is no 2012 apocalypse, there might be one in February 11, 2116, but that might not come true either. There could be an asteroid headed towards the planet, we could deflect it if we had enough warning. These are amazing facts about the Universe we live in, it is larger and more incredible than we can know. The video below shows an extra-solar planet, that has been photographed by the Hubble telescope. Some extra-solar planets are gas giants that orbit the parent star too close and have a surface temperature approaching 2500 degrees Celsius. Those planets would not be inhabited obviously, but other stars could have planets in the Goldilocks zone not too hot and not too cold. They could house some form of intelligent life. That would be a momentous moment if we actually encountered intelligent life, it would change the Earth forever. First contact would change the whole paradigm of religion and politics, we could finally do away with nation-states and unite to become a space faring race as shown in Star Trek.
I hope that comes to fruition some time in the future. We can not be stuck on this planet until the Earth is burned up.