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Keyword: supernova

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  • Amazing New Views of Betelgeuse Courtesy of ALMA

    06/30/2017 12:59:50 PM PDT · by BenLurkin · 21 replies
    An angry monster lurks in the shoulder of the Hunter. Weíre talking about the red giant star Betelgeuse, also known as Alpha Orionis in the constellation Orion. Recently, the Atacama Large Millimeter Array (ALMA) gave us an amazing view of Betelgeuse, one of the very few stars that is large enough to be resolved as anything more than a point of light. 650 light years distant, Betelgeuse is destined to live fast, and die young. The star is only eight million years old Ė young as stars go. Consider, for instance, our own Sun, which has been shining as a...
  • "Similar Event Within 100 Light Years of Earth Would Be Catastrophic" --Astronomers...

    07/28/2016 7:54:07 AM PDT · by LibWhacker · 68 replies
    For most of 2016, astronomers have been viewing a ball of hot gas billions of light years away that is radiating the energy of hundreds of billions of suns. At its heart is an object a little larger than 10 miles across. And astronomers are not entirely sure what it is. If, as they suspect, the gas ball is the result of a supernova, then itís the most powerful supernova ever seen. Most astronomers today believe that one of the plausible reasons we have yet to detect intelligent life in the universe is due to the deadly effects of local...
  • Did a supernova two million years ago brighten the night sky and give our ancestors cancer?

    06/17/2016 4:22:29 PM PDT · by rickmichaels · 39 replies
    Daily Mail ^ | June 17, 2016 | Cheyenne Macdonald
    Millions of years ago, a series of nearby supernovae sent radiation and debris raining down to Earth. The events left traces of radioactive iron-60 embedded in the sea floor and even on the Moon, and now, researchers are saying they may have had life-altering effects on the early inhabitants of our planet. At just hundreds of light-years away, two major stellar explosions may have spurred changes to the environment, and even increased the rates of cancer and mutation.
  • Supernovae showered Earth with radioactive debris

    04/06/2016 3:50:53 PM PDT · by JimSEA · 27 replies
    Science Daily ^ | 4/6/2016 | Australian National University
    An international team of scientists has found evidence of a series of massive supernova explosions near our solar system, which showered Earth with radioactive debris. The scientists found radioactive iron-60 in sediment and crust samples taken from the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian Oceans. The iron-60 was concentrated in a period between 3.2 and 1.7 million years ago, which is relatively recent in astronomical terms, said research leader Dr Anton Wallner from The Australian National University (ANU). "We were very surprised that there was debris clearly spread across 1.5 million years," said Dr Wallner, a nuclear physicist in the ANU Research...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- The Rise and Fall of Supernova 2015F

    02/09/2016 3:12:01 PM PST · by SunkenCiv · 9 replies
    NASA ^ | February 09, 2016 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Sit back and watch a star explode. The actual supernova occurred back when dinosaurs roamed the Earth, but images of the spectacular event began arriving last year. Supernova 2015F was discovered in nearby spiral galaxy NGC 2442 by Berto Monard in 2015 March and was unusually bright -- enough to be seen with only a small telescope. The pattern of brightness variation indicated a Type Ia supernova -- a type of stellar explosion that results when an Earth-size white dwarf gains so much mass that its core crosses the threshold of nuclear fusion, possibly caused by a lower mass...
  • The Incomprehensible Power of a Supernova

    01/23/2016 7:15:45 PM PST · by MtnClimber · 28 replies
    Real Clear Science ^ | 23 Jan, 2016 | Tom Hartsfield
    That supernova at bottom left is not sitting in front of the galaxy NGC 4526. It's in the outer edge of that galaxy, 55 million light years away. Last summer, astronomers found the most powerful supernova they had ever seen, an event called ASSASN-15lh. Their report published in the journal Science last week contained a measurement of the total power of this explosion: (2.2+/-0.2) x 1045 Ergs per second. That's an esoteric number phrased in unfamiliar units. What's the real meaning of this much power? Astronomers look at a stellar object and measure its luminosity: the amount of energy it...
  • SCIENTISTS SPOT BRIGHTEST SUPERNOVA YET, OUTSHINES MILKY WAY

    01/15/2016 2:13:28 PM PST · by NYer · 26 replies
    AP ^ | January 15, 2016 | MARCIA DUNN
    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) -- Astronomers have discovered the brightest star explosion ever, a super supernova that easily outshines our entire Milky Way. An international team revealed "the most powerful supernova observed in human history" Thursday in the latest Science journal. The astronomers used a network of telescopes around the world to spot the record-breaking supernova last year.Super luminous supernovas - extra bright stellar explosions - are believed to be rare. The newly discovered supernova is especially rare: It is more than twice as luminous as any supernova observed to date, including the previous record-holders.At its peak intensity, it is...
  • Former boxing champ O'Neil ‚ÄėSuperNova‚Äô Bell shot and killed in Atlanta robbery

    11/26/2015 6:36:15 AM PST · by ConservativeStatement · 35 replies
    Examiner.com ^ | November 26, 2015 | Richard Webster
    Former boxing champion O'Neil ‚ÄúSuperNova‚ÄĚ Bell, 41, was shot to death during a robbery just after midnight on November 25 when he exited a MARTA bus in southwest Atlanta. Another robbery suspect victim getting off the same bus was also shot in the hip but is alive, according to 11 Alive in Atlanta. When police arrived on the scene, they found both gunshot victims lying in the street. Bell, a cruiserweight world boxing champion from Jamaica who fought professionally from 1998 through 2011, was pronounced dead at the scene. The surviving male victim, 28, was taken to Grady Hospital with...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- Puppis A Supernova Remnant

    08/29/2015 11:13:33 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 4 replies
    NASA ^ | August 28, 2015 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: Driven by the explosion of a massive star, supernova remnant Puppis A is blasting into the surrounding interstellar medium about 7,000 light-years away. At that distance, this colorful telescopic field based on broadband and narrowband optical image data is about 60 light-years across. As the supernova remnant expands into its clumpy, non-uniform surroundings, shocked filaments of oxygen atoms glow in green-blue hues. Hydrogen and nitrogen are in red. Light from the initial supernova itself, triggered by the collapse of the massive star's core, would have reached Earth about 3,700 years ago. The Puppis A remnant is actually seen through...
  • Milky Way's center unveils supernova 'dust factory'

    03/20/2015 3:05:24 AM PDT · by samtheman · 20 replies
    http://www.sciencedaily.com/ ^ | Cornell University
    Sifting through the center of the Milky Way galaxy, astronomers have made the first direct observations -- using an infrared telescope aboard a modified Boeing 747 -- of cosmic building-block dust resulting from an ancient supernova.
  • Astronomers saw the same star explode four times in four places because of a rare cosmic phenomenon

    03/05/2015 2:29:23 PM PST · by BenLurkin · 18 replies
    washingtonpost.com ^ | Rachel Feltman
    Because of the lensing effect of a massive galaxy located between this supernova and the telescope imaging it, the same explosion showed up four times around the galaxy. This formation is called an Einstein Cross. Einstein first predicted the phenomenon of gravitational lensing (a result of his theory of relativity) about a century ago. Astronomers have seen Einstein Crosses made by galaxies and black holes before, but this is the first time they've seen a supernova jump into the shot. In this case, the supernova -- which is 9 billion light years away -- would be too faint to be...
  • Astroquizzical: What happens when Betelgeuse explodes?

    02/25/2015 6:57:23 AM PST · by C19fan · 31 replies
    Starts with a Bang! ^ | February 24, 2015 | Jillian Scudder
    Question: If Betelgeuse explodes right now, could we see it with naked eye? It is over 400 light years away, so you might think that people would see it long after it actually happens? Betelgeuse is already one of the brightest stars in the night sky, sitting somewhere around the 8th or 9th brightest star in the night sky. (These lists donít include the Sun, which is somewhat obviously always the brightest object in the sky.) It sits in the constellation Orion, along with a number of other bright stars, and makes up the left hand shoulder of the warrior....
  • ĎLopsidedí Supernova Could Be Responsible for Rogue Hypervelocity Stars

    02/10/2015 9:15:24 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 20 replies
    universetoday.com ^ | Dan Majaess
    Hypervelocity stars have been observed traversing the Galaxy at extreme velocities (700 km/s), but the mechanisms that give rise to such phenomena are still debated. Astronomer Thomas M. Tauris argues that lopsided supernova explosions can eject lower-mass Solar stars from the Galaxy at speeds up to 1280 km/s. ď[This mechanism] can account for the majority (if not all) of the detected G/K-dwarf hypervelocity candidates,Ē he said. Several mechanisms have been proposed as the source for hypervelocity stars, and the hypotheses can vary as a function of stellar type. A simplified summary of the hypothesis Tauris favors begins with a higher-mass...
  • The massive supernova that could annihilate life on Earth (but don't panic- experts say luckily

    12/19/2014 7:00:13 AM PST · by C19fan · 28 replies
    UK Daily Mail ^ | December 19, 2014 | Mark Prigg
    It contains one of the biggest and brightest stars in our galaxy, weighing at least 90 times the mass of the sun. The Eta Carinae star system, however, also has a dark side - it could bring the end of life on Earth. However, the good news is that experts say this is 'extremely' unlikely - but cannot rule it out.
  • Weak supernova might have left zombie star

    08/07/2014 10:32:03 AM PDT · by ConservingFreedom · 13 replies
    EarthSky ^ | Aug 07, 2014 | Science Wire, Space
    Astronomers are scrutinizing a star system in a distant galaxy that exploded, possibly leaving behind a zombie star. They say their study of this system will help them understand supernova explosions, which are an important piece of the cosmic puzzle, used to help measure distances in vast space and the expansion of the universe. Standard Type Ia supernovae occur when a white dwarf draws enough material from a companion star onto itself to raise its own core temperature, ultimately creating a runaway nuclear reaction that causes the white dwarf to explode as a supernova. In such cases, the explosion typically...
  • Astronomy Picture of the Day -- SN 1006 Supernova Remnant

    07/12/2014 4:20:54 AM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 6 replies
    NASA ^ | July 12, 2014 | (see photo credit)
    Explanation: A new star, likely the brightest supernova in recorded human history, lit up planet Earth's sky in the year 1006 AD. The expanding debris cloud from the stellar explosion, found in the southerly constellation of Lupus, still puts on a cosmic light show across the electromagnetic spectrum. In fact, this composite view includes X-ray data in blue from the Chandra Observatory, optical data in yellowish hues, and radio image data in red. Now known as the SN 1006 supernova remnant, the debris cloud appears to be about 60 light-years across and is understood to represent the remains of a...
  • Alien Species Living In The Inner Milky Way Could Be In Danger

    06/26/2012 12:27:17 AM PDT · by Windflier · 58 replies
    Message To Eagle ^ | 23 March 2012 | Staff
    Few people doubt there is intelligent alien life in the Milky Way galaxy, but where can we expect to find it? Astronomers think that the inner sector of the Milky Way Galaxy may be the most likely to support habitable worlds. Unfortunately some of these places are also most dangerous to all life-forms. According to Michael Gowanlock of NASA's Astrobiology Institute, and his Trent University colleagues David Patton and Sabine McConnel, habitability in the Milky Way can be based on three factors: supernova rates, metallicity (the abundance of heavy elements, used as a proxy for planet formation) and the time...
  • Bright New Supernova Blows Up in Nearby M82, the Cigar Galaxy

    01/22/2014 8:03:47 AM PST · by BenLurkin · 19 replies
    .universetoday ^ | January 22, 2014 | Bob King on
    Now hereís a supernova bright enough for even small telescope observers to see. And itís in a bright galaxy in Ursa Major well placed for viewing during evening hours in the northern hemisphere. Doesnít get much better than that! ... M81 is a bright, striking edge-on spiral galaxy bright enough to see in binoculars. Known as the Cigar or Starburst Galaxy because of its shape and a large, active starburst region in its core, itís only 12 million light years from Earth and home to two previous supernovae in 2004 and 2008. Neither of those came anywhere close to the...
  • Scientists witness massive gamma-ray burst, don't understand it

    11/22/2013 7:53:51 AM PST · by Red Badger · 35 replies
    Christian Science Monitor ^ | November 21, 2013 | By Pete Spotts, Staff writer
    An exploded star some 3.8 billion light-years away is forcing scientists to overhaul much of what they thought they knew about gamma-ray bursts Ė intense blasts of radiation triggered, in this case, by a star tens of times more massive than the sun that exhausted its nuclear fuel, exploded, then collapsed to form a black hole. Last April, gamma rays from the blast struck detectors in gamma-ray observatories orbiting Earth, triggering a frenzy of space- and ground-based observations. Many of them fly in the face of explanations researchers have developed during the past 30 years for the processes driving the...
  • Violent Past: Young sun withstood a supernova blast

    10/27/2013 6:03:53 PM PDT · by SunkenCiv · 62 replies
    Science News ^ | May 23, 2007 | Ron Cowen
    Martin Bizzarro of the University of Copenhagen and his colleagues set out to determine the amount of iron in the early solar system. To do so, they measured nickel-60, a decay product of iron-60, in eight meteorites known to have formed at different times during the first 3 million years of the solar system. The meteorites that formed more than about a million years after the start of the solar system contain significantly more nickel-60 than do those that formed earlier, the team found. In a neighborhood of young stars, only a supernova could have produced iron-60, the parent of...