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Supernova 1987A Trace Shock Wave

Wednesday 27 October 2010

Image Credit: NASA/ESA/K. France (UC Boulder)/P. Challis & R. Kirshner (HSCA)

Mission:Hubble Space Telescope

Instrument: Advanced Camera for Surveys – High-Resolution Channel

This image shows the entire region around supernova 1987A. The most prominent feature in the image is a ring with dozens of bright spots. A shock wave of material unleashed by the stellar blast is slamming into regions along the ring’s inner regions, heating them up, and causing them to glow. The ring, about a light-year across, was probably shed by the star about 20,000 years before it exploded.

Université Paris-Sud 11 Faculté des Sciences GEOPS CNRS
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