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Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Shocked by Supernova 1987A
NASA ^ | February 27, 2012 | (see photo credit)

Posted on 02/27/2012 3:47:43 PM PST by SunkenCiv

Explanation: Twenty five years ago, the brightest supernova of modern times was sighted. Over time, astronomers have watched and waited for the expanding debris from this tremendous stellar explosion to crash into previously expelled material. A clear result of such a collision is demonstrated in the above time lapse video of images recorded by the Hubble Space Telescope between 1994 and 2009. The movie depicts the collision of an outward moving blast wave with the pre-existing, light-year wide ring. The collision occurred at speeds near 60 million kilometers per hour and shock-heats the ring material causing it to glow. Astronomers continue to study the collision as it illuminates the interesting past of SN 1987A, and provides clues to the origin of the mysterious rings.

February 27, 2012

(Excerpt) Read more at 129.164.179.22 ...


TOPICS: Astronomy; Astronomy Picture of the Day; Science
KEYWORDS: apod; astronomy; science; supernova1987a
[Credit: Hubble Space Telescope, NASA, ESA; Video compilation: Mark McDonald]

1 posted on 02/27/2012 3:47:48 PM PST by SunkenCiv
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To: brytlea; cripplecreek; decimon; bigheadfred; KoRn; Grammy; married21; steelyourfaith; Mmogamer; ...

2 posted on 02/27/2012 3:54:29 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: brytlea; cripplecreek; decimon; bigheadfred; KoRn; Grammy; married21; steelyourfaith; Mmogamer; ...

3 posted on 02/27/2012 3:58:53 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv

Clearly Ronald Reagan’s fault.


4 posted on 02/27/2012 4:01:50 PM PST by cicero2k
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To: SunkenCiv

Does not look like a place you want to be too close to.


5 posted on 02/27/2012 4:12:12 PM PST by doorgunner69
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To: SunkenCiv; neverdem; SmithL; cogitator

So, what is the best estimate of the speed of the particles in the blast wave?

1) The light, of course, at c 300,000/sec). But what is the speed of the particles?

2) If we now see 10-15 supernovas per century across all visible galaxies, why do they assume the early supernovas had a lifespan of less than 50,000 years? What has changed to cause so few now? Or are they assuming all the early supernova-sized source stars already burned out?

3) If supernova blasts like this one created all heavier matter nuclei in the universe (only Hydrogen and Helium coming the assumed Big Bang) where are the supernova remnants that created the 50x10^54 number of heavy nuclei collisions we find in the earth’s mass alone?

Would not you require some large fraction of that 10^54 number of stars present - since only a small fraction of each supernova is going to get blown away from the source star into exactly the right place at exactly the right time to be gathered into the proto-solar system’s dust cloud?


6 posted on 02/27/2012 4:18:57 PM PST by Robert A. Cook, PE (I can only donate monthly, but socialists' ABBCNNBCBS continue to lie every day!)
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To: Robert A. Cook, PE

I was going to point out that this looks like a flaming eye, but I guess I won't.
1987a 1987a

7 posted on 02/27/2012 4:35:57 PM PST by SunkenCiv (FReep this FReepathon!)
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To: SunkenCiv
Spellbinding! Thanks very much, SunkenCiv!!!
8 posted on 02/27/2012 5:06:37 PM PST by onyx (SUPPORT FREE REPUBLIC, DONATE MONTHLY. If you want on Sarah Palin's Ping List, let me know.)
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To: SunkenCiv

The most interesting part is how that picture is “live” yet about something that happened over 186,000 years ago. That’s how long the light from that supernova took to reach the backs of our eyes.


9 posted on 02/27/2012 5:08:26 PM PST by James C. Bennett (An Australian.)
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To: doorgunner69
I've heard it theorized that if Betelgeuse ever goes (ultra)super-nova -- and it's certainly going to in the universal 'short term' perception of time -- our planet Earth may be fried chicken even though we're somewhere around 650 light years away from it. It depends on the direction that the star's poles are facing if we'd get bathed in X-Ray and Gamma Rays or not.

So far, every supernova that Mankind has witnessed was a star smaller than our Sun and no closer than 20,000 light years away -- I think I got that right.

Betelgeuse is so massive that our own Sun looks like a grain of sand next to a regulation NBA basketball. Astronomically, Betelgeuse is basically just next door in our galactic neighborhood.

10 posted on 02/27/2012 5:11:37 PM PST by The KG9 Kid
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To: SunkenCiv
Supernova 1987A ????? What a piece of $hit !!

It couldn't even compete with a beautiful car I once had: 1967 Chevy NOVA Super Sports.

Now, that was a real and also beautiful Supernova.

: )

11 posted on 02/27/2012 5:38:16 PM PST by jmax
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To: The KG9 Kid
If it is 650 light-years away and it exploded 640 years ago, we're in trouble. There seems to be a lot of uncertainty about its distance--I have an old World Almanac which says 520 light-years (so we are seeing the light that left there in 1492) but there are lower and higher guesses.

It's supposed to explode within the next million years. So I won't put it high on my things to worry about. As Louis XV would have said, Apres moi, le poulet frit.

12 posted on 02/27/2012 5:51:08 PM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: Verginius Rufus
"If it is 650 light-years away and it exploded 640 years ago, we're in trouble."

If it is 650 light-years away and it exploded 649 years ago, the Mayans were right.

13 posted on 02/27/2012 6:10:46 PM PST by The KG9 Kid
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