Hubble Hooks a Supernova Host Galaxy

Aug. 21, 2020


purplish-blue "Meathook galaxy" against black backdrop of space

This image from the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope features the spectacular galaxy NGC 2442, nicknamed the Meathook galaxy owing to its extremely asymmetrical and irregular shape.

This galaxy was host to a supernova explosion spotted in March 2015, known as SN 2015F, that was created by a white dwarf star. The white dwarf was part of a binary star system and siphoned mass from its companion, eventually becoming too greedy and taking on more than it could handle. This unbalanced the star and triggered runaway nuclear fusion that eventually led to an intensely violent supernova explosion. The supernova shone brightly for quite some time and was easily visible from Earth through even a small telescope until months later.

Text credit: ESA (European Space Agency)
Image credit: ESA/Hubble & NASA, S. Smartt et al.
Last Updated: Aug. 21, 2020Editor: Rob Garner

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August 23, 2020 2:47 pm

What more proof do you need than that. Definitely caused by global warming.

Alastair Brickell
August 23, 2020 3:03 pm

Great image.

It’s amazing to me in all these images just how many distant galaxies you can see. Even in the low resolution image on the webpage I can see at least 6 and there’s probably dozens/hundreds more. And that’s just the spiral galaxies like our own. We are not alone!

G Mawer
Reply to  Alastair Brickell
August 23, 2020 5:41 pm

Speaking of not alone, what do we, here, think of the images taken by the Santilli telescope?

Reply to  Alastair Brickell
August 24, 2020 4:36 pm

Download the 55mb tif file and you can see much more, including quite a few very faint ones.

Javert Chip
August 23, 2020 4:15 pm

Ok Charles, you got me on this one (I’m not an astrophysicist).

What you’re describing is a Type I super nova (white dwarf accretes material from a companion star until a some critical threshold is crossed and the sucker blows up with a (supposedly) consistent) brightness.

I’m not being critical (don’t have enough understanding of this phenomena), but your text can easily be read as implying this was an especially violent Type I Super Nova explosion. Due to the gradual accretion process, aren’t all Type I Super Nova explosions more or less equal?

Type II Super Nova is a different animal all together.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Javert Chip
August 23, 2020 5:14 pm

Type one ‘standard candle’ because the pre supernova mass and atomic composition (fusion stopped at carbon) is so well known. I guest posted on this a few months ago in Essay Quantum musings.

Thomas Englert
August 23, 2020 4:15 pm

First time I’ve heard of a dwarf going supernova.

Javert Chip
Reply to  Thomas Englert
August 23, 2020 5:04 pm

It’s not just the dwarf.

My (highly suspect) understanding is Type I Super Nova involves a white dwarf (think mass of the sun; size of the earth) with a hydrogen-rich companion star. The white dwarf is incredibly dense so its fusion reactions create heavier elements than He (like O & C).

Over a period of time, due to the differences in gravitational fields, the white dwarf accretes (steals) matter from the companion star. At some critical point, enough hydrogen fuel is falling in and being compressed by the dwarf’s gravity, that some critical threshold is crossed and the system goes Super Nova.

Rud Istvan
Reply to  Javert Chip
August 23, 2020 5:18 pm

See my rather more complex explanation previously posted as ‘Some random quantum thoughts’ June 2020. Been there, done that. Already this year.

Javert Chip
Reply to  Rud Istvan
August 23, 2020 6:29 pm

Thanks, Rud.

This stuff is fascinating but very complex to us financial weenies.

Reply to  Thomas Englert
August 24, 2020 9:31 am

First time I’ve heard of a dwarf going supernova.

Different from a giant star collapsing, Type I supernovae is a carbon-oxygen fusion bomb of a white dwarf reaching 1.4 solar masses from accretion from a companion star.

Mike Dubrasich
August 23, 2020 4:53 pm

Update: the Meathook Galaxy has been renamed the Vegetarian Swoosh Galaxy by NASA’s PC Division. Evidently the European Space Agency hasn’t gotten the memo yet.

Reply to  Mike Dubrasich
August 23, 2020 6:01 pm

…… plus it was a privileged star of short stature.

Reply to  philincalifornia
August 23, 2020 6:26 pm

So that’s why it was disappeared?

Reply to  Ellen
August 23, 2020 7:10 pm

Exactly, that and the fact that it became gravitationally-challenged.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Mike Dubrasich
August 23, 2020 7:12 pm

See the problem is that it’s no longer possible to reliably satirize NASA. Is this true? I wouldn’t doubt it for a minute.

Rich Davis
Reply to  Rich Davis
August 23, 2020 7:17 pm

Just imagine what NASA could be doing under the Harris Administration next year!

Reply to  Rich Davis
August 24, 2020 9:36 am

First thing is make NASA rename black holes as holes of color (even tho they are holes of absolutely NO color).

Javert Chip
Reply to  beng135
August 24, 2020 12:40 pm

Black is no color (absence of color).

Chris Yu Rhee
Reply to  beng135
August 26, 2020 10:13 pm

Supernovae are asshoe…

August 23, 2020 8:03 pm

NGC 2442 is 50 million light years away, and about 75,000 light years in diameter

Another Scott
August 23, 2020 10:53 pm

In between lots of nothing space is a violent place.

August 24, 2020 9:11 am

Very picturesque galaxy & the prominent arm. Dust spirals all the way down to the center supermassive black hole.

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