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Several hours after supernova explosion, Hubble Telescope captures a bright star

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Several hours after supernova explosion, Hubble Telescope captures a bright star-GadgetAny
space galaxy

The pressure outside a star decreases as it cools and runs out of fuel. A large star’s pressure can be reduced to the point where gravity takes over and the star collides in a matter of seconds. The explosion we refer to as a supernova is the outcome of this collapse.

Real-time observations of supernovae are typically uncommon. But today, when sorting through NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope data, a team of astronomers unintentionally discovered images showing the very initial phases of a supernova explosion.

According to an article by Interesting Engineering, the amazing collection was found in Hubble archived photographs, and the researchers were able to determine that they were shot just hours before the star crashed.


They also released a study describing their findings in the journal Nature.

The study’s lead author, Wenlei Chen, a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Minnesota, told Interesting Engineering that the team was surprised to find several images of a supernova because they had expected to find more transients that had been missed by past searches.

Chen continued by stating how absolutely unexpected the visuals of the rapidly growing supernova were.

In the Abell 370 galaxy cluster, more than 5 million light-years away, Hubble discovered the fast-developing supernova in December 2010. 

Chen and colleagues expected to witness little optical transients in the historical Hubble data, so they were taken aback to discover something far more spectacular.

The scientists discovered a total of three gravitationally lensed images of the explosion. Gravitational lensing, which is created when a huge object like a galaxy cluster bends spacetime around it, bends the light that travels through it. This frequently magnifies far-off things like nebulae and stars. For instance, the James Webb Space Telescope’s first scientific image of SMACS 023 reveals many instances of gravitational lensing.

While the other two gravitationally lensed images depict the early stages of the supernova at varying dates, the first gravitationally lensed image shows the stars barely six hours after they exploded. 

Based on their redshift estimates, which determine the rate of the universe’s expansion, the physicists calculate that the explosion is 11.5 billion years old.

Aaem Joshi

By Aaem Joshi

I am a Journalist who loves digging up stories that remain unheard. Strongly Believe in the knowledge of the social world.

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