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Article: X-ray illumination of the ejecta of supernova 1987A

TitleX-ray illumination of the ejecta of supernova 1987A
Authors
KeywordsTitanium
Heating
Radioactive decay
X-ray
Astronomy
Issue Date2011
PublisherNature Publishing Group. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.nature.com/nature
Citation
Nature, 2011, v. 474 n. 7352, p. 484-486 How to Cite?
AbstractWhen a massive star explodes as a supernova, substantial amounts of radioactive elements - primarily 56 Ni, 57 Ni and 44 Ti - are produced. After the initial flash of light from shock heating, the fading light emitted by the supernova is due to the decay of these elements. However, after decades, the energy powering a supernova remnant comes from the shock interaction between the ejecta and the surrounding medium. The transition to this phase has hitherto not been observed: supernovae occur too infrequently in the Milky Way to provide a young example, and extragalactic supernovae are generally too faint and too small. Here we report observations that show this transition in the supernova SN 1987A in the Large Magellanic Cloud. From 1994 to 2001, the ejecta faded owing to radioactive decay of 44 Ti as predicted. Then the flux started to increase, more than doubling by the end of 2009. We show that this increase is the result of heat deposited by X-rays produced as the ejecta interacts with the surrounding material. In time, the X-rays will penetrate farther into the ejecta, enabling us to analyse the structure and chemistry of the vanished star. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/139646
ISSN
2015 Impact Factor: 38.138
2015 SCImago Journal Rankings: 21.936
ISI Accession Number ID
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Swedish Research Council
Swedish National Space Board
Space Telescope Science Institute
Funding Information:

This work was supported by the Swedish Research Council and the Swedish National Space Board. Support for the HST observing programme was provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Inc.

References

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorLarsson, Jen_HK
dc.contributor.authorFransson, Cen_HK
dc.contributor.authorÖstlin, Gen_HK
dc.contributor.authorGröningsson, Pen_HK
dc.contributor.authorJerkstrand, Aen_HK
dc.contributor.authorKozma, Cen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSollerman, Jen_HK
dc.contributor.authorChallis, Pen_HK
dc.contributor.authorKirshner, RPen_HK
dc.contributor.authorChevalier, RAen_HK
dc.contributor.authorHeng, Ken_HK
dc.contributor.authorMcCray, Ren_HK
dc.contributor.authorSuntzeff, NBen_HK
dc.contributor.authorBouchet, Pen_HK
dc.contributor.authorCrotts, Aen_HK
dc.contributor.authorDanziger, Jen_HK
dc.contributor.authorDwek, Een_HK
dc.contributor.authorFrance, Ken_HK
dc.contributor.authorGarnavich, PMen_HK
dc.contributor.authorLawrence, SSen_HK
dc.contributor.authorLeibundgut, Ben_HK
dc.contributor.authorLundqvist, Pen_HK
dc.contributor.authorPanagia, Nen_HK
dc.contributor.authorPun, CSJen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSmith, Nen_HK
dc.contributor.authorSonneborn, Gen_HK
dc.contributor.authorWang, Len_HK
dc.contributor.authorWheeler, JCen_HK
dc.date.accessioned2011-09-23T05:52:53Z-
dc.date.available2011-09-23T05:52:53Z-
dc.date.issued2011en_HK
dc.identifier.citationNature, 2011, v. 474 n. 7352, p. 484-486en_HK
dc.identifier.issn0028-0836en_HK
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/139646-
dc.description.abstractWhen a massive star explodes as a supernova, substantial amounts of radioactive elements - primarily 56 Ni, 57 Ni and 44 Ti - are produced. After the initial flash of light from shock heating, the fading light emitted by the supernova is due to the decay of these elements. However, after decades, the energy powering a supernova remnant comes from the shock interaction between the ejecta and the surrounding medium. The transition to this phase has hitherto not been observed: supernovae occur too infrequently in the Milky Way to provide a young example, and extragalactic supernovae are generally too faint and too small. Here we report observations that show this transition in the supernova SN 1987A in the Large Magellanic Cloud. From 1994 to 2001, the ejecta faded owing to radioactive decay of 44 Ti as predicted. Then the flux started to increase, more than doubling by the end of 2009. We show that this increase is the result of heat deposited by X-rays produced as the ejecta interacts with the surrounding material. In time, the X-rays will penetrate farther into the ejecta, enabling us to analyse the structure and chemistry of the vanished star. © 2011 Macmillan Publishers Limited. All rights reserved.en_HK
dc.languageengen_US
dc.publisherNature Publishing Group. The Journal's web site is located at http://www.nature.com/natureen_HK
dc.relation.ispartofNatureen_HK
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subjectTitanium-
dc.subjectHeating-
dc.subjectRadioactive decay-
dc.subjectX-ray-
dc.subjectAstronomy-
dc.titleX-ray illumination of the ejecta of supernova 1987Aen_HK
dc.typeArticleen_HK
dc.identifier.emailPun, CSJ: jcspun@hkucc.hku.hken_HK
dc.identifier.authorityPun, CSJ=rp00772en_HK
dc.description.naturepostprint-
dc.identifier.doi10.1038/nature10090en_HK
dc.identifier.scopuseid_2-s2.0-79959559504en_HK
dc.identifier.hkuros195603en_US
dc.relation.referenceshttp://www.scopus.com/mlt/select.url?eid=2-s2.0-79959559504&selection=ref&src=s&origin=recordpageen_HK
dc.identifier.volume474en_HK
dc.identifier.issue7352en_HK
dc.identifier.spage484en_HK
dc.identifier.epage486en_HK
dc.identifier.isiWOS:000291939700042-
dc.publisher.placeUnited Kingdomen_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLarsson, J=16042791200en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridFransson, C=7004051800en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridÖstlin, G=6701814160en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridGröningsson, P=23034634600en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridJerkstrand, A=6507225371en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKozma, C=12800852100en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSollerman, J=6603947073en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridChallis, P=7004555495en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridKirshner, RP=35277140000en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridChevalier, RA=7101871369en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridHeng, K=23989037500en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridMcCray, R=35954431900en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSuntzeff, NB=7006255654en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridBouchet, P=7006076277en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridCrotts, A=35241689000en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridDanziger, J=7005666183en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridDwek, E=7004165539en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridFrance, K=7003729615en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridGarnavich, PM=7006524172en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLawrence, SS=7202646485en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLeibundgut, B=7007116593en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridLundqvist, P=7004499555en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridPanagia, N=35400629400en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridPun, CSJ=7003931846en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSmith, N=7403172437en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridSonneborn, G=7006137500en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridWang, L=42862587400en_HK
dc.identifier.scopusauthoridWheeler, JC=7403110438en_HK
dc.identifier.citeulike9434221-

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