In a paper to be published in the Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, available online now here, astronomers report on their use of x-ray spectroscopy with the European Space Agency’s (ESA) XMM-Newton spacecraft the bulge of the Andromeda Galaxy also known as M31. The astronomers conclude that “the results indicate that iron ejecta of type Ia supernovae are partly-mixed with the hot gas.” Type Ia supernovae are those supernovae produced within a binary star system, whose white dwarf component has gone supernova.
In a paper submitted to the Astrophysical Journal Letters, available online now here, an international team of astronomers propose a model for the development of a Type Ia supernova. In their model, a Type Ia supernova develops from the collision of two white dwarfs. This needs further examination before it makes its way into textbooks.
Type Ia supernovae are those supernovae which develop within a binary star system, where one of the stars has already ended its life as a white dwarf, and manages to “steal” so much material from its companion star that it ends up collapsing under its own weight, and the rebound gives us a supernova explosion. These type of supernovae are especially of interest to astronomers because it was discovered that they can be used as a way to gauge the distance to remote galaxies which have this type of supernova explosion. In fact, it’s these type of supernovae which provided the initial evidence for astronomers that the universe is not only expanding, but it is accelerating in its expansion. Analysis of the spectra of Type Ia supernovae is also of interest, and now in a paper released this week, available online here, astronomers have discovered that the use of a mathematical tool called wavelets, can provide superior analysis of Type Ia supernovae spectra.