KONSTANTINOS KIFONIDIS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY KONSTANTINOS KIFONIDIS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Supernova 1987a explosion (image 3 of 5). Computer simulation of a star exploding as Supernova 1987a 3000 seconds after its core collapsed. Density increases from black through red and orange to white. Fingers of heavy elements from the core have collided with a dense shell at the hydrogen- helium boundary (bright orange) slowing them down and creating ripples in the shell. Supernova 1987a was the explosive death of the blue supergiant star Sanduleak -69 202. Work done at the Max Planck Institute for Astrophysics in Germany. See images R732/041-45 for the explosion sequence.
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