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Four Bright Knots of Superheated Gas in Supernova 1987A Ring

Four Bright Knots of Superheated Gas in Supernova 1987A Ring


Depicts: SN 1987A
Copyright: NASA, Peter Challis and Robert Kirshner (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics), Peter Garnavich (University of Notre Dame) and the SINS collaboration.

Image processing is used to emphasize four new bright knots of superheated gas discovered in the February 2 Hubble observations. The brightest knot, at the far right, was seen in 1997. Astronomers have been waiting several years to see more of the ring light-up as the supernova shockwave smashes into it. This is the first definitive sign of the full onset of a dramatic and violent collision which will continue over the next few years, rejuvenating SN1987A as a powerful source of X-ray and radio emissions.
Last Update: 1 September 2019
30-Sep-2022 00:06 UT

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