NASA’s Flagship X-Ray Telescope Back Online After Weekend Safe Mode

One of NASA’s flagship telescopes, the Chandra X-Ray Observatory, went into safe mode last week following gyroscope problems. That telescope is now back up and running. Read More >>

Rare Type of Supernova Extinguishes Star at Unprecedented Speed

Supernovae produce some of the most powerful explosions in the cosmos, expelling a doomed star’s contents at velocities reaching 10 per cent the speed of light. It usually takes a few weeks or months for a supernova to fade into nothingness, but astronomers have now documented a record-setting case in which a star was extinguished in just a few days. Read More >>

A Stellar Explosion Could Be Visible In the Night Sky in 2022

It’s not often that a new body appears in the night sky — aside from meteors and the occasionally comet, things tend to look pretty much the same. Now, astronomers predict that a pair of stars so close they’re basically touching will collide and create a so-called red nova, resulting in a bright explosion visible to the naked eye. Read More >>

Melting M&Ms Look Like Exploding Supernovas

Drop a couple of M&Ms in a petri dish filled with water, point a Sony A7R M2 camera at the experiment capturing a 4K timelapse, and what you get is some remarkably beautiful footage of the colourful candy coating melting away. Without the ‘m’ stamped on each candy, you would almost assume this was footage from by a telescope peering deep into space. [Vimeo via PetaPixel] Read More >>

Brightest Supernova Ever Seen Was Actually Something Much Darker

Last year, astronomers recorded the brightest supernova explosion ever seen. Follow up observations now suggest this cataclysmic event wasn’t a supernova at all, but rather, an extremely rare celestial phenomenon involving a supermassive black hole and a rather unfortunate star. Read More >>

Imposter Supernova Has Erupted At Least Three Times

The star system Eta Carinae has puzzled astronomers for centuries because of its oddly variable brightness—as bright as a supernova explosion at one point in the 19th century. Now astronomers from the University of Arizona have determined that there were at least two earlier explosions in the star’s long history, making this a very strange star system indeed. Read More >>

Astronomers Have Predicted an Exploding Star’s Appearance For the First Time Ever

Stars explode on a fairly regular basis, but they’re virtually impossible to predict. Now, for the first time ever, astronomers have captured an image of a supernova they knew was coming. Here’s how they did it. Read More >>