Sunday, May 5, 2013

A BIG Boom

Hey Space Placers!

  On April 27, 2013 at 3:47 a.m. EDT, NASA's Swift spacecraft recorded a huge outburst of energy. The Gamma Ray Burst (GRB) event was the most energetic ever recorded and lasted long enough that space and ground based telescopes were able to observe it.

 GRB's are thought to form when a massive star collapses in a supernova and becomes a black hole (see my blog of 5-4-13). Huge amounts of energy are released and in this GRB it is estimated to have had 95 billion electron volts (a unit of energy used in high energy physics) or 35 billion times the energy of visible light.

This GRB was also close as these events go as it was about 3.6 billion light years away. That is close enough for astronomers to search for the emerging supernova and they are doing so. It is expected that by mid-month a visible light supernova should be at the location in Leo the Lion.

I'll let you know what happens.

Read more about it and see the actual GRB images from the event:

Sky Guy in VA

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