Supernova (def.): Explosive death of a star, caused by the sudden onset of nuclear burning in a white dwarf star, or gravitational collapse of the core of massive star followed by a shock wave that disrupts the star.
Supernovas are some of the most dramatic events in the cosmos. These titanic events send shock waves rumbling through space and create giant bubbles of gas that have been superheated to millions of degrees. Chandra has captured supernovas and the remnants they've left behind in spectacular X-ray images, helping to determine the energy, composition, and dynamics of these celestial explosions. More >