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Tycho's supernova, 1572

Tycho's supernova, 1572

V700/0265

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Credit

ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Tycho's supernova. Diagram published in 'De Nova Stella' (1573) by the Danish astronomer Tycho Brahe (1546-1601), showing the supernova that he had observed on 11 November 1572. The supernova (here labelled I, upper centre) appeared in the constellation of Cassiopeia. A supernova is the explosive death of a massive star. This supernova became as bright as the planet Venus, and was visible in daylight for two weeks. It remained visible at night to the naked eye for around 16 months. This supernova was later named SN 1572. The diagram shows eight stars (labelled A-H) in the constellation, with a legend in Latin at upper left. The text at bottom describes the appearance and location of the supernova.

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