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A New Kind of Supernova Has Been Discovered

Everyone, say hello to Type Iax, a new classification of supernova that astronomers are calling “the runt of the supernova litter.” But these celestial blasts are hardly subtle; they're a newly documented and surprisingly frequent subcategory of supernova in which helium-sucking white dwarfs survive the ensuing… » 3/27/13 9:00am 3/27/13 9:00am

What's the minimum safe distance from a supernova?

So apparently there are big burning things in the sky called stars. They are unstable, and I don't want to scare you, but they occasionally explode. When they explode, you don't want to be near them. But how far are you supposed to get away? It doesn't really matter, since if we're too close to any star there's… » 8/10/12 1:09pm 8/10/12 1:09pm

Massive Explosion Culprit Revealed: A Rogue Supernova

A decade after astronomers first spotted a huge, bright light source in the nearby Circinus galaxy, they've finally identified its source: a supernova, dubbed SN 1996cr. It took coordinating data from 18 different telescopes, via the Internet, to identify that nova, a milestone in the new era of "Internet astronomy."… » 9/26/08 4:30pm 9/26/08 4:30pm

Brightest Supernova In History Has Turned To Velvety Goodness

This supernova dominated our skies for weeks, a thousand years ago. It was brighter than Venus and visible during the day, and observers documented it in China, Japan, Europe and the Arab world. We now know that the brightest supernova on record, SN 1006c, was caused by a white dwarf star that gained mass from a… » 7/15/08 11:52am 7/15/08 11:52am

Listen To Pink Floyd And Watch The Lovely Aftermath Of Stellar…

It takes a lot of imaging power to capture the awesome aftermath of a star committing suicide. To get this freaktastic death blossom pic of supernova remnant Cassiopeia A, it took three of NASA's Great Observatories, using three different light wavebands. The red is from the Spitzer Space Telescope's infrared data,… » 5/30/08 4:00pm 5/30/08 4:00pm