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Supernova in M101


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Only a 20second video but worth watching! An explosion billions of miles across eventually to span over many lightyears of space and with enough light to burn as bright as billions of stars within the center of the galaxy.

And just to think, what is being witnessed in this video happened 20,000,000 years ago, a full 19,750,000 years before humans even existed.

I originally posted this on my facebook, then I realised this community might ACTUALLY care about what I was writing :)

Edited by Helen
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It came on TV this morning it is in the Pin Wheel galaxy, M101 in Usa Major, should, according to what has been said, be visable in binos for about the next two weeks,

and for the record it is 21.8 million Light Years away and 1 light year is about 5.9 million million miles, so what we see now happened all that time ago.

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What great about this supernova is its a type 1a and as such by the way its formed can be used as a standard candle to gain accurate distance measurements.

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How accurate the information is, is questionable, but so far its been muted that the SN could increase in brightness over the next two weeks and be visible in binoculars, so you should see it in a small scope, albeit that it will probably only look like a very small out of focus star :)

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I'm not sure how long this supernova will be visible, but Tycho's supernova of 1572 (also a type 1a) was visible for over a year before it faded from naked eye visibility.

I assume this supernova could, in theory, remain at around mag 10 or so for a similar period.

Tim.

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I've been wondering if anyone has ever captured the moment of a star going supernova. As far as I can tell, visually, no. But there was one (2008d in NGC2770) caught in X rays as it happened: SN 2008D - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

...it will probably only look like a very small out of focus star

Don't think it will look out of focus at that distance! (unless of course you haven't focused your scope properly :))

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The 4 supernovae that I have seen to date have all looked just like a faint star. The "magic" comes from knowing what that faint star actually is and how long the light from it has been travelling before it fell onto your objective lens / mirror :)

Edited by John
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It came on TV this morning it is in the Pin Wheel galaxy, M101 in Usa Major, should, according to what has been said, be visable in binos for about the next two weeks,

and for the record it is 21.8 million Light Years away and 1 light year is about 5.9 million million miles, so what we see now happened all that time ago.

Just thinking about it frazzles my brain!, Amazing!!

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I'm not sure how long this supernova will be visible, but Tycho's supernova of 1572 (also a type 1a) was visible for over a year before it faded from naked eye visibility.

I assume this supernova could, in theory, remain at around mag 10 or so for a similar period.

Tim.

Sorry for quoting myself but I think my rather optimistic prediction is a long way out.

Here's the light curve for the SN

http://www.aavso.org/lcg/plot?auid=000-BKD-525&starname=SN%202011FE&lastdays=28&start=&stop=2455823.71146&obscode=&obscode_symbol=2&obstotals=yes&calendar=calendar&forcetics=&grid=on&visual=on&r=on&bband=on&v=on&pointsize=1&width=900&height=600&mag1=&mag2=&mean=&vmean=

It is amazing how many people seem to have picked up from news items that the SN is easily visible with bins or even naked eye. At mag 10 and unlikely to get any brighter this is clearly not the case.

Tim

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