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Saturday, November 27, 2010

Supernova remnant Simeis 147 in constellation Taurus

Supernova remnant Simeis 147 in constellation Taurus
Click on the image to enlarge

These are the intricate filaments of faint supernova remnant Simeis 147. Seen towards the constellation Taurus it covers nearly 3 degrees (6 full moons) on the sky corresponding to a width of 160 light-years at the stellar debris cloud's estimated distance of 3,000 light-years. It is one of the faintest objects in the sky, discovered using a 25" Schmidt camera in 1952 by G.A Shajn and V.E. Hase at the Crimean Astrophyical Observatory at Simeis (in the former U.S.S.R). It was also imaged independently at Palomar by the 48" "Samuel Oschin" Schmidt camera on red photographic plates at roughly the same time period.
This supernova remnant has an apparent age of about 100,000 years - meaning light from the massive stellar explosion first reached Earth 100,000 years ago - but this expanding remnant is not the only aftermath. The cosmic catastrophe also left behind a spinning neutron star or pulsar, all that remains of the original star's core.
Credit: Davide De Martin
http://www.skyfactory.org/

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