Hubble Supernova 1987A Scrapbook (1994-2003)

Since its launch in 1990, NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope has watched a celestial drama unfold at a stellar demolition site. A shock wave unleashed during a stellar explosion, called Supernova 1987A (SN 1987A), has been racing toward a ring of matter encircling the blast site. Astronomers used Hubble to monitor the ring for signs of the impending bombardment. They detected the first evidence of a collision in 1996 [the bright spot at 11 o'clock in the Feb. 6, 1998 image]. Subsequent observations show dozens more "hot spots" as the blast wave slammed into the ring, compressing and heating the gas, and making it glow.


NASA/ESA, P. Challis, R. Kirshner (Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics) and B. Sugerman (STScI


About the Image

NASA press release
Release date:19 February 2004, 21:00
Size:3000 x 2400 px

About the Object

Name:IRAS 05240-6948, SN 1987A
Type:Local Universe : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Supernova
Distance:170000 light years

Image Formats

r.titleLarge JPEG
860.1 KB
r.titleScreensize JPEG
214.8 KB

Colours & filters

Optical Hubble Space Telescope
Optical Hubble Space Telescope

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