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Puzzling Supernova Companion Star

Credits

Produced by the Space Telescope Science Institute’s Office of Public Outreach in collaboration with NASA’s Universe of Learning partners: Caltech/IPAC, Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian, and NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
 
Video imagery:

·       Star Zeta Ophiuchi, composite image. X-ray: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Cambridge/J. Sisk-Reynés et al.; Infrared: NASA/JPL/Spitzer; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA; Optical: PanSTARRS
·       Star Zeta Ophiuchi, infrared image: NASA/JPL/Spitzer
·       Star Zeta Ophiuchi, X-ray image: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Cambridge/J. Sisk-Reynés et al.
·       Star Zeta Ophiuchi, composite image. X-ray: NASA/CXC/Univ. of Cambridge/J. Sisk-Reynés et al.; Infrared: NASA/JPL/Spitzer; Radio: NSF/NRAO/VLA; Optical: PanSTARRS
 
Writer: Leah Ramsay
Designer: Leah Hustak, Joseph Olmsted
Science review: Dr. Frank Summers
Education review: Jim Manning
Music from Music for Non-Profits
Transcript

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Images of galaxies, planets, gaseous clouds of interstellar dust.
 
Text, News from the Universe.
 
Puzzling Supernova Companion Star. August 1, 2022.
 
A bright blue shiny orb in the center of strips of orange-white matter and silky green threads of gaseous material.
 
Text, Multiple telescopes have studied the star Zeta Ophiuchi, but it still contains mysteries that haven't been solved.
 
After Zeta Ophiuchi's companion star went supernova, it was ejected from its regular orbit at 100,000 miles per hour.
 
Points of light from stars dot the black universe.
 
NASA's infrared Spitzer Space Telescope shows a shock wave where matter blowing off the Zeta Ophiuchi's surface slammed into interstellar gas.
 
Up close, the blue blob appears alone in the vast universe.
 
Text, NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory detects an X-ray bubble right around the star, far brighter than computer models predict.
 
Some models also predict X-rays would be brightest near the shockwave, not around the star where they are actually detected.
 
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Researchers plan to test more complex models, including turbulence and particle acceleration, to understand the X-ray data.
 
This news was brought to you in part by the Chandra X-ray Center in Cambridge, Massachusetts.