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Pulsar in M82, illustration

Pulsar in M82, illustration

C042/6295

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25.0 MB (836.7 KB compressed)

3944 x 2219 pixels

33.3 x 18.8 cm ⏐ 13.1 x 7.4 in (300dpi)

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Credit

NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY NASA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Pulsar, illustration. A pulsar is a type of neutron star, the leftover core of a star that exploded in a supernova. These dead stars send out rotating beams of radiation that sweep past Earth like lighthouse beams. An extremely bright pulsar was discovered in 2014 located in the Messier 82 galaxy 12 million light-years away, pulsing every 1.37 seconds. It was originally thought to be a massive black hole, but X-ray observations by NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, (NuSTAR), Chandra X-ray Observatory and Swift satellite revealed it as a pulsar, pulsing with the energy of about 10 million suns.

Release details

Model release not required. Property release not required.

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