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Exploding white dwarf, 3D simulation

Exploding white dwarf, 3D simulation

C007/5327

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Credit

THE FLASH CENTER / UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY THE FLASH CENTER / UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Exploding white dwarf, 3D simulation. Supercomputer model of a white dwarf star exploding 1.7 seconds after ignition. The star surface, coloured green, measures 3,800 kilometres in diameter. Other colours represent temperature (blue and red are cooler, orange and yellow are hotter). Ignition produces a burning bubble of hot ash that rises rapidly towards the surface and expands as it cools around the perimeter of the star. The ash is travelling towards an area opposite to where it first emerged. A white dwarf is a very dense star, roughly the size of the Earth, but with a mass comparable to the Sun. When the white dwarf runs out of fuel it can explode as a Type Ia supernova.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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