A space telescope is looking at the debris of a famous supernova

GO

0.7158220410346985
In 1987, a star in a nearby galaxy went supernova and its fiery demise was detected in Earth’s nighttime sky with the naked eye for months.
Scientists figured when its core collapsed, the remnants would turn into one of two things: a black hole, where nothing escapes; or a neutron star, the most dense object in the universe besides a black hole.
But NASA’s Webb Space Telescope cut through the clutter by peering in infrared light and saw two telltale chemical signatures — argon and sulfur — of a pulsing super-hot neutron star, according to a study published Thursday in the journal Science.
This neutron star is only 12 miles (20 kilometers) from end to end, yet weighs 1 1/2 times our sun.
Somewhere in the middle of that dust is the neutron star, he said.
Scientists had long suspected the collapsed core was now a neutron star.
But this measurement by the Webb telescope, even though it isn’t a direct image of the neutron star, provides a pretty definitive answer, Fransson and outside scientists said.
The case for a neutron star is well-made, said Stanford University astrophysicist Roger Blandford, who wasn’t part of the study.
Because the supernova explosion was so recent and close, it “is ‘a gift that keeps on giving’, teaching us about neutrinos, the evolution of stars and now what happens following the explosion,” Blandford said in an email.
___The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Science and Educational Media Group.

Researchers have determined what happened to a star that burst into a spectacular supernova that was visible from Earth more than thirty years ago.

Researchers have established what happened to a star that burst into a spectacular supernova that was visible from Earth more than thirty years ago: it turned into a neutron star, which is among the strangest objects in the universe.

The supernova explosion of a star in a nearby galaxy in 1987 was visible to the unaided eye for months as it occurred in the night sky over Earth. Scientists predicted that after its core collapsed, the remaining material would either become a neutron star, which is the densest object in the universe aside from black holes, or a black hole, where nothing can escape.

The astronomers’ inability to see through the dust was caused by the abundance of debris. According to a study released on Thursday in the journal Science, NASA’s Webb Space Telescope, however, sorted through the clutter by looking through infrared light and discovered two distinct chemical signatures of a pulsing, extremely hot neutron star: argon and sulfur.

This discovery, along with its predecessors that helped seed the universe with essential elements like carbon and iron, should help astronomers better understand this type of cosmic oddball and how recently and precisely it erupted.

Even though this neutron star is only 12 miles (20 kilometers) long, it weighs 1.5 times as much as our sun. Little space exists between the atoms because it is tightly packed. Although there are closer but older neutron stars in our own galaxy, scientists believe that the aftermath of the so-called supernova 1987A is probably the only instance in modern astronomy that has witnessed the birth and early years of a neutron star.

The study’s lead author, Claes Fransson, an astrophysicist at Stockholm University in Sweden, claimed that these objects are the most unusual things in the universe apart from black holes. Although we have knowledge of these objects from the 1960s, none of them have been observed in their true form. “.

Photographs of the far-off remnant of the supernova reveal what Fransson refers to as “a ring of pearls” surrounding a cloud of dust. He stated that the neutron star is located somewhere in the midst of that dust.

It was long suspected by scientists that the collapsed core was now a neutron star. Fransson and other scientists claimed that although this measurement from the Webb telescope isn’t a direct picture of the neutron star, it offers a fairly conclusive response.

Scientist Roger Blandford of Stanford University, who was not involved in the research, believes that there is a strong case for the existence of a neutron star.

We are learning about neutrinos, the evolution of stars, and now what happens after the explosion because the supernova explosion was so recent and close, according to Blandford in an email.

I

Leave a Reply

scroll to top