News From the Field
Rapid Supernova Could be New Class of Exploding Star
November 5, 2009
University of California, Berkeley postdoctorate Dovi Poznanski was looking through seven-year-old data when he chanced upon a very strange supernova that flashed and was gone in less than a month, when 3-4 months is typical. The unusually rapid supernova appears to match the predicted behavior of a thermonuclear explosion on a white dwarf that is drawing helium from its binary companion. This mechanism is quite different from the two standard types of supernovae.
University of California, Berkeley
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