Science

Scientists discover the oldest known supernova which took place 10.5 billion years ago

Astrophysicist find oldest human record of Supernova on ancient carved stone with two Suns

In a new find, scientists have got hold of oldest supernova ever detected in Universe. As per the scientists, the supernova occurred almost 10.5 billion years ago making it the oldest found supernova. According to NASA, the supernovae are the largest explosions taking place in space.

A supernova occurs when a bright star explodes before reaching the end of its life or you can say Supernova marks the end of a massive star.  Before ending its life, the star explodes and suddenly looks very bright in the Universe and emits a large amount of energy greater than our sun would emit in its entire lifetime. This titanic explosion is the supernova. The new study has revealed that the scientists have discovered one such supernova, which they consider as the oldest one ever found and studied.

The name of the exploding star is DES16C2nm and it is classified as a superluminous supernova (SLSN). The DES16C2nm supernova was detected by the Dark Energy Survey. The DES is an international collaboration to look at several hundred million galaxies and map them in order to get more information about the dark energy. Scientists were quite excited about DES discovering the oldest known supernova.

Lead author of the study Mathew Smith of the University of Southampton in the UK said, “It is thrilling to be part of the survey that has discovered the oldest known supernova. DES16C2nm is extremely distant, extremely bright, and extremely rare – not the sort of thing you stumble across every day as an astronomer. He further said that another interesting thing about the discovery was the extreme distance of the DES16C2nm which provided them a unique insight into the nature of SLSN. Smith informed that the ultraviolet light coming from SLNS showed them the amount of metal produce n the explosion and the temperature of the explosion itself, which are to understanding what causes and drives these titanic cosmic explosions.

Co-author Mark Sullivan, a professor at the University of Southampton said that their next step is to find more distant events and determine the variety and sheer number of these events. DES16C2nm was first detected in August 2016. With the help of three of the world’s most powerful telescopes – the Very Large Telescope and the Magellan, in Chile, and the Keck Observatory, in Hawaii, the scientists confirmed the distance and extreme brightness of DES16C2nm in October last year. The study regarding those findings was recently published in the Astrophysical Journal.

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