Stellar Thief Is the Surviving Companion to a Supernova

Seventeen years ago, astronomers witnessed a supernova go off 40 million light-years away in the galaxy called NGC 7424, located in the southern constellation Grus, the Crane. Now, in the fading afterglow of that explosion, NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope has captured the first image of a surviving companion to a supernova. This picture is the most compelling evidence that some supernovas originate in double-star systems.

Seventeen years ago, astronomers had witnessed a supernova go off 40 million light-years away in the galaxy called NGC 7424, located in the southern constellation Grus, the Crane, the NASA statement said. The image of the companion star was seen in the fading afterglow of that supernova, called SN 2001ig. SN 2001ig is categorized as a Type IIb stripped-envelope supernova. This type of supernova is unusual because most, but not all, of the hydrogen is gone prior to the explosion.

The Hubble Space Telescope is a large telescope in space. NASA launched Hubble in 1990.

It was built by the United States space agency NASA, with contributions from the European Space Agency.

Hubble is the only telescope designed to be serviced in space by astronauts.

Expanding the frontiers of the visible Universe, the Hubble Space Telescope looks deep into space with cameras that can see across the entire optical spectrum from infrared to ultraviolet.

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