Friday, June 03, 2011

A Perfect Spiral with an Explosive Secret

A Perfect Spiral with an Explosive Secret (5/30/11)
This spiral galaxy was discovered back in the nineteenth century by French astronomer Édouard Jean-Marie Stephan, but in 2008 it became a prime target for observations thanks to the violent demise of a white dwarf star. The type Ia supernova known as SN2008a was spotted in the galaxy and briefly rivalled the brilliance of its entire host galaxy but, despite the energy of the explosion, it can no longer be seen this Hubble image, which was taken around a year and a half later.

NGC 634 – click for 1280×782 image

More: here


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