The Short Spectacular Life of a Superstar

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Science  25 Jun 2004:
Vol. 304, Issue 5679, pp. 1915-1916
DOI: 10.1126/science.1100370

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Supernovae are spectacular events--the death throes of stars that can be seen across the universe--and they can leave behind puzzling remnants in the form of neutron stars or black holes. In his Perspective, Gilmore discusses results reported in the same issue by Bietenholz et al. on the observation of a radio-emitting remnant in supernova 1986J. This unusual compact energetic object is apparently very similar to the supernova remnant in the Crab nebula, and represents the youngest neutron star or black hole associated with a supernova yet observed.