Free Newsletters - Space News - Defense Alert - Environment Report - Energy Monitor
. 24/7 Space News .




STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Observed: The outburst before the blast
by Staff Writers
Tel Aviv, Israel (SPX) Feb 12, 2013


File image.

Before they go all-out supernova, certain large stars undergo a sort of "mini-explosion," throwing a good-sized chunk of their material off into space. Though several models predict this behavior and evidence from supernovae points in this direction, actually observations of such pre-explosion outbursts have been rare.

In new research led by Dr. Eran Ofek of the Weizmann Institute, scientists found such an outburst taking place a short time - just one month - before a massive star underwent a supernova explosion.

The findings, which recently appeared in Nature, help to clarify the series of events leading up to the supernova, as well as providing insight into the processes taking place in the cores of such massive stars as they progress toward the final stage of their lives.

Ofek, a member of the Institute's Particle Physics and Astrophysics Department, is a participant in the Palomar Transient Factory (PTF) project (led by Prof. Shri Kulkarni of the California Institute of Technology), which searches the skies for supernova events using telescopes at the Palomar Observatory in California.

He and a research team from Israel, the UK and the US decided to investigate whether outbursts could be connected to later supernovae by combing for evidence of them in observations that predated PTF supernova sightings, using tools developed by Dr. Mark Sullivan of the University of Southampton.

The fact that they found such an outburst occurring just a little over a month before the onset of the supernova explosion was something of a surprise, but the timing and mass of the ejected material helped them to validate a particular model that predicts this type of pre-explosion event. A statistical analysis showed that there was only a 0.1% chance that the outburst and supernova were unrelated occurrences.

The exploding star, known as a type IIn supernova, began as a massive star, at least 8 times the mass of our sun. As such a star ages, the internal nuclear fusion that keeps it going produces heavier and heavier elements - until its core is mostly iron. At that point, the weighty core quickly collapses inward and the star explodes.

The violence and mass of the pre-explosion outburst they found, says Ofek, point to its source in the star's core. The material is speedily ejected from the core straight through the star's surface by the excitation of gravity waves. The researchers believe that continued research in this direction will show such mini-explosions to be the rule for this type of supernova.

Also participating in this research were Prof. Avishay Gal-Yam, Dr. Ofer Yaron and Iair Arcavi of the Institute's Particle Physics and Astrophysics Department, and Prof. Nir Shaviv of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

.


Related Links
Weizmann Institute of Science
Stellar Chemistry, The Universe And All Within It






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





STELLAR CHEMISTRY
NASA Telescopes Discover Strobe-Like Flashes in Young Stars
Washington DC (SPX) Feb 12, 2013
Two of NASA's great observatories, the Spitzer and Hubble space telescopes, have teamed up to uncover a mysterious infant star that behaves like a strobe light. Every 25.34 days, the object, designated LRLL 54361, unleashes a burst of light. Although a similar phenomenon has been observed in two other young stellar objects, this is the most powerful such beacon seen to date. The hear ... read more


STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Building a lunar base with 3D printing

US, Europe team up for moon fly-by

Russia to Launch Lunar Mission in 2015

US, Europe team up for moon fly-by

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
In milestone, Mars rover collects first bedrock sample

How The World's Saltiest Pond Gets Its Salt; Implications For Water On Mars

Lockheed Martin Completes Assembly, Begins Environmental Testing of NASA's MAVEN Spacecraft

NASA Curiosity Rover Collects First Martian Bedrock Sample

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Supersonic skydiver even faster than thought

Ahmadinejad says ready to be Iran's first spaceman

Iran's Bio-Capsule Comes Back from Space

A Hero For Humankind: Yuri Gagarin's Spaceflight

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Reshuffle for Tiangong

China to launch 20 spacecrafts in 2013

Mr Xi in Space

China plans manned space launch in 2013: state media

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Progress docks with ISS

NASA to Send Inflatable Pod to International Space Station

ISS to get inflatable module

ESA workhorse to power NASA's Orion spacecraft

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Ariane 5 delivers record payload off back-to-back launches this week

Eutelsat and Arianespace sign new multi-year multiple launch services agreement

Ariane 5 Arrives At Kourou For 4th Automated Transfer Vehicle Mission

Rocketdyne Powers Atlas 5 Upper Stage, Placing New Landsat In Orbit

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
Earth-like planets are right next door

Direct Infrared Image Of An Arm In Disk Demonstrates Transition To Planet Formation

Kepler Data Suggest Earth-size Planets May Be Next Door

Earth-like planets may be closer than thought: study

STELLAR CHEMISTRY
3D Printing on the Micrometer Scale

Nextdoor renovates before taking on the world

High-energy X-rays shine light on mystery of Picasso's paints

Satellite undergoes extreme testing




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement