Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Time in space

01.09.2006
Stars may lead fascinating lives, but sometimes it's in death that they really shine. Some stars finish up as black holes but, a moment before the end, they explode, sending material in all directions and shining with a light that can be seen throughout the universe.

This end only comes to the heavies of the neighborhood, those that weigh 30 times as much as our sun or more. When it happens, their dazzling light can be seen at much greater distances than before the event. Thus, early observers of the heavens saw bright points of light appear in the sky where none had existed the night before, and they dubbed them "supernova" or "new stars."

Until now, scientists had only been able to spot supernovae several days after stars in the process of exploding had begun to brighten. But the scientists who investigate this phenomenon needed to be able to observe what happens to these stars in real time. That's precisely what NASA scientists have managed to do for the first time, and their achievement has confirmed theoretical research carried out by Prof. Eli Waxman of the Weizmann Institute's Department of Condensed Matter Physics.

Aided by NASA's advanced research satellite, Swift, the scientists succeeded in detecting a supernova just 160 seconds after the event began. Seeing the supernova so early allowed the scientists to observe, in addition to the material being expelled in all directions, jets of gamma rays and x rays shooting out from the vicinity of the explosion.

This confirmed the theory that supernovas are the source of gamma ray bursts that have been measured in the past. They also found that the star was composed mainly of oxygen and carbon, signs that the star was, indeed, very heavy. For the first time, scientists were able to identify shock waves that give rise to the gamma and x-ray radiation emanating from the center of the star and moving toward the surface. These findings have bolstered the theoretical model of such supernova explosions proposed by Waxman several years ago.

Jennifer Manning | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.acwis.org

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Basque researchers turn light upside down
23.02.2018 | Elhuyar Fundazioa

nachricht Attoseconds break into atomic interior
23.02.2018 | Max-Planck-Institut für Quantenoptik

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Attoseconds break into atomic interior

A newly developed laser technology has enabled physicists in the Laboratory for Attosecond Physics (jointly run by LMU Munich and the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics) to generate attosecond bursts of high-energy photons of unprecedented intensity. This has made it possible to observe the interaction of multiple photons in a single such pulse with electrons in the inner orbital shell of an atom.

In order to observe the ultrafast electron motion in the inner shells of atoms with short light pulses, the pulses must not only be ultrashort, but very...

Im Focus: Good vibrations feel the force

A group of researchers led by Andrea Cavalleri at the Max Planck Institute for Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) in Hamburg has demonstrated a new method enabling precise measurements of the interatomic forces that hold crystalline solids together. The paper Probing the Interatomic Potential of Solids by Strong-Field Nonlinear Phononics, published online in Nature, explains how a terahertz-frequency laser pulse can drive very large deformations of the crystal.

By measuring the highly unusual atomic trajectories under extreme electromagnetic transients, the MPSD group could reconstruct how rigid the atomic bonds are...

Im Focus: Developing reliable quantum computers

International research team makes important step on the path to solving certification problems

Quantum computers may one day solve algorithmic problems which even the biggest supercomputers today can’t manage. But how do you test a quantum computer to...

Im Focus: In best circles: First integrated circuit from self-assembled polymer

For the first time, a team of researchers at the Max-Planck Institute (MPI) for Polymer Research in Mainz, Germany, has succeeded in making an integrated circuit (IC) from just a monolayer of a semiconducting polymer via a bottom-up, self-assembly approach.

In the self-assembly process, the semiconducting polymer arranges itself into an ordered monolayer in a transistor. The transistors are binary switches used...

Im Focus: Demonstration of a single molecule piezoelectric effect

Breakthrough provides a new concept of the design of molecular motors, sensors and electricity generators at nanoscale

Researchers from the Institute of Organic Chemistry and Biochemistry of the CAS (IOCB Prague), Institute of Physics of the CAS (IP CAS) and Palacký University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

2nd International Conference on High Temperature Shape Memory Alloys (HTSMAs)

15.02.2018 | Event News

Aachen DC Grid Summit 2018

13.02.2018 | Event News

How Global Climate Policy Can Learn from the Energy Transition

12.02.2018 | Event News

 
Latest News

Basque researchers turn light upside down

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

Finnish research group discovers a new immune system regulator

23.02.2018 | Health and Medicine

Attoseconds break into atomic interior

23.02.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>