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Binary neutron stars, illustration

Binary neutron stars, illustration

C042/6290

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30.1 MB (935.1 KB compressed)

4323 x 2432 pixels

36.6 x 20.6 cm ⏐ 14.4 x 8.1 in (300dpi)

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Credit

NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Binary neutron stars about to collide, illustration. Such a collision is known as a kilonova. Kilonovae are thought to be the origin for all elements heavier than iron in the universe. This kind of collision was witnessed for the first time in galaxy NGC 4993 on the 17th August 2017. The merger produced gravitational waves and gamma rays, which were detected by LIGO-Virgo and Fermi/INTEGRAL detectors respectively. Galaxy NGC 4993 is about 130 million light-years from Earth in the constellation Hydra.

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