Shockwave of an exploding star seen for the first time in sky


Shockwave of an exploding star seen for the first time in sky

exploding star Over 75 million light-years away in the constellation of Virgo (The Virgin) lies NGC 4981 a spiral galaxy with a rather explosive past.

Shockwave of an exploding star seen for the first time in sky
Credit: ESO About the Object Name:NGC 4981
Type:Local Universe : Galaxy :
Type : Spiral
Distance:75 million light years
Constellation:Virgo
Category:Galaxies

NGC 4981 was discovered on 17 April 1784 by William Herschel, and subsequently documented in John Dreyer’s New General Catalogue. Over a century later, on 23 April 1968, the galaxy once again made it into the records when a Type la supernova — a stellar explosion in a binary star system — occurred within its confines: SN 1968I. SN 1968I, however, was not to be the galaxy’s only supernova. Decades later, the core collapse of a massive star led to supernova SN 2007c.

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This spectacular shot of NGC 4981 — not showing any of the supernovae explosions; the bright star visible in the image is a foreground star — was captured by FORS, the visible and near-UV FOcal Reducer and low dispersion Spectrograph for ESO’s Very Large Telescope (VLT). FORS is the Swiss Army knife of ESO’s instruments — it is able to study many different astronomical objects in many different ways, and is responsible for some of the most iconic photos ever captured with the VLT.

 

Shock-wave of an exploding star seen for the first time in sky

Credit: ESO
About the Object
Name:NGC 4981
Type:Local Universe : Galaxy :
Type : Spiral
Distance:75 million light years
Constellation: Virgo
Category: Galaxies

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