Sunday, September 16, 2012

SN 1604 - Kepler's Supernova Remnant

Kepler's Supernova Remnant: The debris from a supernova observed in 1604.

This composite image of Kepler's supernova remnant shows different colors ranging from lower to higher energies: red, yellow, green, blue and purple. An optical image from the Digitized Sky Survey (pale yellow and blue) shows stars in the field. The Kepler supernova was a Type Ia event, the thermonuclear explosion of a white dwarf. New analysis suggests that the supernova explosion was not only more powerful, but might have also occurred at a greater distance, than previously thought.

Scale: Image is about 5 arcmin across (19-33 light years).

Image credit: X-ray: NASA/CXC/SAO/D.Patnaude, Optical: DSS

Note: For more information, see Kepler's Supernova Remnant: Was Kepler's Supernova Unusually Powerful?

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