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Supernovas & SNR
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Supernovas & SNR
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Supernovas & SNR
Chandra Images
Supernovas & SNR
Animations & Video: Supernovas & Supernova Remnants
Click for high-resolution animation
1. Multiwavelength Views of Tycho's Supernova Remnant
QuicktimeMPEG A long Chandra observation of Tycho has revealed a pattern of X-ray "stripes" never seen before in a supernova remnant. The stripes are seen in the high-energy X-rays (blue) that also show the blast wave, a shell of extremely energetic electrons. Low-energy X-rays (red) show expanding debris from the supernova explosion. The stripes, seen to the lower right of this composite image that includes optical data from the Digitized Sky Survey, may provide the first direct evidence that a cosmic event can accelerate particles to energies a hundred times higher than achieved by the most powerful particle accelerator on Earth.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/Rutgers/K.Eriksen et al.; Optical: DSS)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
2. A Tour of SN 1979C
QuicktimeMPEG Audio Only The youngest known black hole in our cosmic neighborhood may have been found using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory and other telescopes. Evidence for this very young black hole was found in a supernova called 1979C, seen to explode about 30 years ago. Dr Dan Patnaude of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics led this study and discusses it with us.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/D.Patnaude et al, Optical: ESO/VLT, Infrared: NASA/JPL/Caltech)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
3. Animation of Black Hole Formation in SN 1979C
QuicktimeMPEG This animation shows how a black hole may have formed in SN 1979C. The collapse of a massive star is shown, after it has exhausted its fuel. A flash of light from a shock breaking through the surface of the star is then shown, followed by a powerful supernova explosion. The view then zooms into the center of the explosion. Red, slow-moving material in a disk is shown falling onto the white neutron star that formed when the star collapsed. The rate of infall onto the neutron star increases until the star collapses into a black hole. Matter should continue to fall into the black hole and generate bright X-ray emission for many years.
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(NASA/CXC/A.Hobart)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
4. Tour of G327.1-1.1
QuicktimeMPEG Audio Only G327.1-1.1 is the aftermath of a massive star that exploded as a supernova in the Milky Way galaxy. A highly magnetic, rapidly spinning neutron star called a pulsar was left behind after the explosion and is producing a wind of relativistic particles, seen in X-rays by Chandra and XMM-Newton as well as in radio data. This structure is called a pulsar wind nebula. No clear explanation is yet known for the unusual shape of this supernova remnant. One possibility is that we are seeing the effects of a shock wave bouncing backwards off of the shell of material swept up by the blast wave. The X-ray observations allow scientists to estimate the energy released during the supernova explosion and the age of the remnant, as well as the amount of material being swept up as the blast wave from the explosion expands.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/T.Temim et al. and ESA/XMM-Newton Radio: SIFA/MOST and CSIRO/ATNF/ATCA; Infrared: UMass/IPAC-Caltech/NASA/NSF/2MASS)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
5. Tour of N49
QuicktimeMPEG Audio Only This beautiful image shows N49, which is the aftermath of a supernova explosion in the Large Magellanic Cloud. Optical data from Hubble shows bright filaments where the shockwave generated by the supernova is interacting with the densest regions in nearby clouds of cool molecular gas. A new long observation from Chandra, equaling over 30 hours of observing time, reveals evidence for a bullet-shaped object that is being blown out of the debris field which is left over from an exploded star. This bullet, which is traveling some 5 million miles per hour, was ejected when the supernova went off and is rich in Silicon, Sulfur and Neon. The detection of this bullet shows that the explosion that destroyed the star was highly asymmetric , and gives clues to how some stars explode.
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(X-ray: (NASA/CXC/Penn State/S.Park et al.); Optical: NASA/STScI/UIUC/Y.H.Chu & R.Williams et al)

Related Chandra Images:
  • Photo Album: N49

Click for high-resolution animation
6. Tour of G54.1+0.3
QuicktimeMPEG Audio Only Data from the Chandra X-ray Observatory and the Spitzer Space Telescope were combined to create this image of the dusty remains of a collapsed star. This object, known as G54.1+0.3, is a supernova remnant some 20,000 light years from Earth. The white object near the center of the image is a dense, rapidly-rotating neutron star called a pulsar that was left behind after the star collapsed. The pulsar generates a wind of high-energy particles, seen in the Chandra data, that expands into the surrounding environment, illuminating the material ejected in the supernova explosion. This infrared data shows a shell of dust and gas that's being dispersed back into space where it one day may become part of a new generation of stars and planets.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/T.Temim et al.; IR: NASA/JPL-Caltech)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
7. Animation of Merger Trigger for Supernova
QuicktimeMPEG This animation shows the main way that new Chandra results indicate Type Ia supernova are triggered in elliptical galaxies. Two white dwarf stars orbit each other and lose energy via gravitational radiation, eventually resulting in a merger between the two stars. Because the total mass of this merger exceeds the weight limit for a white dwarf, the merged star is unstable and explodes as a Type Ia supernova.
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View Stills
(NASA/CXC/A.Hobart)

Related Chandra Images:
  • Photo Album: M31

Click for high-resolution animation
8. Images of Cosmic Cannonball
QuicktimeMPEG This sequence begins with a wide-field CTIO optical image which then combines with an X-ray image from the ROSAT observatory of Puppis A, the debris field created when a massive star exploded at the end of its life. The next image from Chandra shows the close-up view of the small, dense object, known as a "neutron star", left behind after the explosion. Chandra observations from 1999 and 2005 clearly show that the neutron star has moved over a period of five years. Astronomers calculate this neutron star is traveling at about 3 million miles per hour and is destined to exit the Galaxy million of years from now.
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(Chandra: NASA/CXC/Middlebury College/F.Winkler et al.; ROSAT: NASA/GSFC/S.Snowden et al.; Optical: NOAO/AURA/NSF/Middlebury College/F.Winkler et al.)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
9. Chandra Comparison of Type Ia Supernova Remnants
QuicktimeMPEG This sequence compares the Chandra image of Kepler's SNR with the Chandra images of 3 Type Ia supernova remnants located in the Milky Way. The X-ray emission for Kepler's remnant contains a bright central region similar to DEM L238, while the X-ray emission for Tycho's remnant and SN 1006 are generally much more uniform. These results suggest that the stars that exploded and caused the Kepler and DEM L238 supernova remnants were much younger than the stars that produced the Tycho and SN 1006 remnants.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/NCSU/S.Reynolds et al; Optical: DSS)

Related Chandra Images:

Click for high-resolution animation
10. Chandra's Kepler Image from Optical View
QuicktimeMPEG This sequence begins with an optical view of the region containing the Kepler supernova remnant. After zooming in, Chandra's X-ray image appears, showing the dramatic difference between what is seen in various wavelengths.
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(X-ray: NASA/CXC/NCSU/S.Reynolds et al; Optical: DSS)

Related Chandra Images: