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Post Info TOPIC: Radio Supernova 2008iz


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Radio Supernova 2008iz

An international team of radio astronomers have discovered the secret explosion of a massive star, a new supernova, in the nearby galaxy M82. Despite being the closest supernova discovered in the last five years, the explosion is exclusively detectable at radio wavelengths since the dense gas and dust surrounding the exploding star leave it invisible in other wavebands. Without the obscuration, this explosion would have been visible even with amateur telescopes. The results are published in this weeks release of Astronomy & Astrophysics Letters.
M82 is an irregular galaxy in a nearby galaxy group located 12 million light-years from Earth. Despite being smaller than the Milky Way, it harbours a vigorous central starburst in the inner few hundred light-years. In this stellar factory more stars are presently born than in the entire Milky Way. M82 is often called an exploding galaxy, because it looks as if being torn apart in optical and infrared images as the result of numerous supernova explosions from massive stars. Many remnants from previous supernovae are seen on radio images of M82 and a new supernova explosion was long overdue. For a quarter of century astronomers have tried to catch this cosmic catastrophe in the act and have started to wonder why the galaxy has been so silent in recent years.

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Position(2000): RA = 09h55m51s.55, Dec = +6940'45".8

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