A supernova has exploded in the galaxy M74, only 30 million light years away.

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A supernova has exploded in the galaxy M74, only 30 million light years away.

This is one of the closest supernovae in recent years. Though it is still brightening and has reached 12th magnitude, it is not expected to brighten to naked eye visibility (about 6th magnitude). Astronomers however have spotted the progenitor star in archival Hubble images, which they have identified as a M-type red supergiant that was also particularly bright in the infrared.



  • wodun

    Maybe two thousand years from now Hubble data will still be available to do this same kind of research but have we planned on how to store the data that long?

  • joe

    Really dumb question here, when did this event happen? this says that the event was thirty million light years away, how far out into the universe can Hubble see with in real time parameters?

  • Hubble can see galaxies that are many billions of light years away. Individual stars, however, can only be seen by Hubble in galaxies that are much closer, as in the case of M74, 30 million light years away.

    I go into the details at much greater length in my book on Hubble, The Universe in a Mirror.

  • Kelly Starks

    I wonder how close a Earth like planet could be to a supernova (or hyper nova) like that and stay habitable?

    Days like today I’m glad Earths ni a thinly populated section of the galaxy. ;)

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