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Hubble Space Telescope supernova remnant.
NASA's Hubble Space Telescope took this beautiful photograph of supernova remnant N132D, located in the Large Magellanic Cloud - a satellite Galaxy to our Milky Way. By measuring the wispy cloud, Astronomers estimate that the original star probably detonated about 3,000 years ago. A supernova-generated shockwave is travelling through space at a velocity of more than 2,000 kilometers per second (4 million mph), and colliding with surrounding material. This causes the material to heat up to millions of degrees so we can see it from here on Earth.
Astronomers knew something was hiding inside a dark, dusty cloud, but they weren't sure exactly what it was. The Spitzer space telescope confirmed a faint Infrared object within the cloud. But by focusing the Hawaii-based Submillimeter Array on the object, Astronomers learned that the hidden object has a weak outflow of material, which was predicted by star formation theories. This revealed the object to be a young star, perhaps only 10,000 to 100,000 years old with only 25 times the mass of Jupiter.
Australian researchers are using ESA's Envisat Earth Observation satellite to peer down and help judge the health of the Great Barrier Reef. Envisat's MERIS sensor can detect coral bleaching down to 10 metres below the surface of the water. This bleaching occurs when the symbiotic algae living with the coral are expelled when ocean temperatures rise. Since Envisat images the entire planet every three days, scientists will be able to watch this bleaching process on a weekly basis to see how the reefs are doing.
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