News of the WeekAstrophysics

Supernova Pumps Iron in Inside-Out Blast

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Science  14 Jan 2000:
Vol. 287, Issue 5451, pp. 203-205
DOI: 10.1126/science.287.5451.203

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Astronomers have assembled a portrait of a star in our galaxy that blew up 300 years ago, revealing a supernova with parts of its deepest core hurled into space the farthest and fastest. The images, taken last August by NASA's newly launched Chandra X-ray Observatory and published in the 10 January issue of Astrophysical Journal Letters, promise to help unravel the violent processes by which giant stars spew oxygen, silicon, iron, and other vital elements into space during their dramatic death throes.