Exiled stars explode far from home

Exiled stars explode far from home


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(This is an artist's concept of a Type Ia supernova exploding in the region between galaxies in a large cluster of galaxies, one of which is visible at the left.)

Astronomers usually discover supernovae within large galaxies, where a star explodes perhaps once a century. Now a team of astronomers has used the sharp imaging capability of the Hubble Space Telescope to confirm that three exploding stars found in the empty regions between galaxies in a cluster were in fact lonely supernovae unattached to any galaxy at all. They were probably ripped from their host galaxies eons ago and exploded far from home.

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