Image of the Day: The Ghostly Beauty of Massive Star Death

E0102
 

Such a star death is violent even by the standards of our violent universe. If our Sun could become a supernova, which is can't because it's too puny, Earth's sky would would fill with the light of a sun that had suddenly become 10 billion times brighter. The flood of energy would be briefly equal to every other star in the Milky Way and vaporize any earthbound observer before it could even register in their brain. Supernova remnant E0102 is the debris of a very massive star that exploded in a neighboring galaxy of the Milky Way known as the Small Megallanic Cloud. E0102 is of intense interest because we see it as it appeared only 2,000 years after its explosion and provides clues about how an enigmatic supernova works and what materials it dispersed into the surrounding interstellar medium.

Image credit -The Chandra Space Observatory

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