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Physicist identifies mysterious core left by exploding star.

Byline: ANI

Washington, November 5 (ANI): A physicist from the University of Alberta in Canada has identified a mysterious core left by an exploding star.

The physicist in question is University of Alberta physics professor Craig Heinke.

A supernova (or exploding star), 20 times heavier than our sun blasted apart, leaving behind a small core that has puzzled astronomers since its discovery in 1999.

Heinke and a colleague have identified the 20 kilometre-wide remnant of the supernova as a neutron star.

It's the youngest neutron star ever identified, and its atmosphere, a thin layer of carbon, is one of a kind.

The supernova event that created the core happened just 330 years ago.

Heinke describes the core as being in its infancy compared to the much older neutron stars scientists have studied.

Because of this discovery, researchers now have access to the complete life cycle of a supernova, and will learn more about the role exploding stars play in the makeup of the universe.

Most minerals found on Earth are the products of supernovae.

"This discovery helps us understand how neutron stars are born in violent supernova explosions," said Heinke.

"This neutron star was born so hot that nuclear fusion happened on its surface, producing a carbon atmosphere just 10 centimeters thick," he added. (ANI)

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Publication:Asian News International
Date:Nov 5, 2009
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