June 30, 2021, 21:01 GMT
This exploding star occurred “relatively close, only 31 million light-years away” from Earth.
An international team of scientists, led by the University of California, Santa Barbara (USA), has discovered the first convincing evidence of a new type of stellar explosion: an electron-capturing supernova, Communicates This educational entity.
Researchers have focused their efforts on the supernova known asSN 2018zd‘, which had many unusual features, some of which were first seen in a starburst. This supernova occurred at “a relatively close distance, only 31 million light-years” from Earth, in Galaxy NGC 2146. This “proximity” allowed scientists to analyze archival images taken by the Hubble Space Telescope before and after the appearance of SN 2018zd.
Historically, supernovae have been divided into two main types: de thermonuclear collapse and iron core. The first is the explosion of a white dwarf star after gaining material in a binary star system, while the collapse of an iron core supernova occurs when a massive star –More than 10 times the mass of the SunNuclear fuel runs out and its iron core collapses, resulting in a black hole or neutron star.
The most famous supernova in the past
Between these two types of supernovae are those in Electron capture. This third class of supernovae stops merging when their cores are made of oxygen, neon, and magnesium, but it’s not enough. Huge iron compositionStudy authors details published in Nature Astronomy.
In an electron-capturing supernova, some electrons are in the oxygen, neon, and magnesium nuclei They collide with their atomic nuclei, in a process called electron capture. This removal of electrons makes the core of the star bend under its own weight and collapse, resulting in a supernova that captures the electron.
This new discovery also sheds light on the mystery of the most famous supernova of the past. In the year 1054 a supernova occurred in the Milky Way (SN 1054) which, according to Chinese and Japanese records, It was so bright which can be seen for 23 days and at night for about two years before becoming Crab Nebula. This could have been due to the supernova electron capture.
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