(ORDO NEWS) — Here is SN 1604 or Kepler’s supernova – a type Ia supernova in the Milky Way , about 6000 light-years away from Earth.
It was discovered by the German astronomer and mathematician Johannes Kepler in the autumn of 1604.
The Kepler supernova belongs to an important class of astronomical objects that are used to measure the expansion rate of the universe.
This is explained by the fact that supernovae of this type explode with almost the same brightness, so they can be used as “tags” to track the accelerated expansion of the Universe.
Astronomers, using a long observation (8 days 13 hours 50 minutes) using NASA‘s Chandra space X-ray observatory, found that the Kepler supernova appeared during the close interaction of a white dwarf and a red giant.
Recall that a white dwarf is a small but extremely dense core of a dead star, and a red giant is a star several times “bloated” that has approached the final stage of its evolution.
The white dwarf was constantly pulling material from the companion star, and at some point it became so unstable that a thermonuclear explosion occurred, giving rise to a Kepler supernova.
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