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Supernova detected in galaxy M82
Posted: Thu, Jan 23, 2014, 1:57 PM ET (1857 GMT)
Supernova in M82, Jan 2014 (UCL) Astronomers this seek discovered a supernova in a relatively nearby galaxy that could become bright enough to see in binoculars. An astronomy class at University College London first spotted the supernova, designated SN 2014J, Tuesday evening, which was quickly confirmed by other telescopes around the world; the supernova also shows up in "pre-discovery" images going back several days. The supernova is in the galaxy M82, about 12 million light-years from the Earth, making it one of the closest supernovae since the billion supernova 1987A. Astronomers believe the supernova is of the type Ia variety, associated with the explosion of white dwarf stars. Detailed observations of the supernova, some astronomers argue, may help better understand dark energy.
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