New image of SN 1987A

This new image of the supernova remnant SN 1987A was taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope in January 2017 using its Wide Field Camera 3 (WFC3). Since its launch in 1990 Hubble has observed the expanding dust cloud of SN 1987A several times and this way helped astronomers to create a better understanding of these cosmic explosions.

Supernova 1987A is located in the centre of the image amidst a backdrop of stars. The bright ring around the central region of the exploded star is composed of material ejected by the star about 20 000 years before the actual explosion took place. The supernova is surrounded by gaseous clouds. The clouds’ red colour represents the glow of hydrogen gas.

The colours of the foreground and background stars were added from observations taken by Hubble’s Wide Field Planetary Camera 2 (WFPC2).

Credit:

NASA, ESA, and R. Kirshner (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation) and P. Challis (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics)

About the Image

Id:heic1704a
Type:Observation
Release date:24 February 2017, 16:00
Related releases:heic1704
Size:3667 x 4024 px

About the Object

Name:SN 1987A
Type:Milky Way : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Supernova
Distance:170000 light years
Category:Stars

Image Formats

Large JPEG
7.8 MB
Screensize JPEG
534.8 KB

Zoomable


Wallpapers

1024x768
471.2 KB
1280x1024
746.8 KB
1600x1200
1.1 MB
1920x1200
1.3 MB
2048x1536
1.8 MB

Colours & filters

BandWavelengthTelescope
Optical
B
439 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
V
555 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2
Optical
H-Alpha
657 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFC3
Optical
I
814 nm Hubble Space Telescope
WFPC2

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