back to article Supernova bubble clocked at 19,000,000 km/h

Astronomers have produced a fetching animation of the inexorable outwards expansion of the remains of the Tycho Type Ia supernova - a white dwarf in a binary star system which went bang in spectacular fashion back in 1572. The explosion was so bright it was visible from Earth during the day, even at a distance of some 10,000 …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    My God,

    it's full of stars!

    1. VinceH
      Coat

      Re: My God,

      TBH, it looks more to me like it's full of trees.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
  2. Uffish
    Coat

    A long time ago and far, far away...

    The phrases "went bang in spectacular fashion back in 1572." and "at a distance of some 10,000 light years" should not be used together. Not for a long while anyway.

    1. teebie

      Re: A long time ago and far, far away...

      It appeared bang in spectacular fashion back in 1572

    2. Mikel

      Re: A long time ago and far, far away...

      It's all relative.

    3. Ian Michael Gumby Silver badge
      Alien

      Re: A long time ago and far, far away...

      At a distance of 10K light years, that would mean that the explosion happened in 8428 BC

      Right around the time man was domesticating dogs, learning to herd sheep and make boats.

      Yes Virginia, the Universe is really a big place.

  3. Little Mouse

    "supersonic" expansion?

    What exactly is the speed of sound in a vacuum these days?

    1. Chris Miller

      Re: "Supersonic"?

      Space isn't a perfect vacuum, so you can still sensibly talk about the speed of sound. It depends on the local density (which varies considerably), but order of magnitude should be ~100 km/sec or 360,000 km/h.

      Incidentally 19,000,000 km/h is getting on for 0.02c.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Supersonic"?

        I would posit (ie. guess) that anything moving fast enough to create a compression layer ahead of it is supersonic.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "Supersonic"?

        "Incidentally 19,000,000 km/h is getting on for 0.02c."

        This. I don't want to know astronomical speeds in km/h, let alone mph. km/s please, which is easy to relate to c at around 300 000km/s.

        It's roughly 5300 km/s which is easier to get your head around.

  4. Sleep deprived

    19,000,000 km/h ?

    With that kind of magnitude, shouldn't we say it's moving at over 5000 km/s instead?

    Sure sounds more impressive to me!

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

      Let's face it, that's bloody fast, however you quantify it.

      1. MrDamage
        Boffin

        Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

        Come on Lester, surely you should have replied with;

        176.0433% of the maximum velocity of a sheep in a vacuum.

        or

        45600000000000 linguine per fortnight

        or

        32975343.55464 brontosaurus per ke

        Come on man. It's your job to enforce standard units at your worklpace.

        1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

          Re: Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

          Looks like you've already done the job for me. Good show.

    2. Wade Burchette Silver badge

      Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

      Yes, but how fast was Han Solo when he made the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

        "Yes, but how fast was Han Solo when he made the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs?"

        AFAIK a parsec is a measure of distance !

        1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
          Holmes

          Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

          "AFAIK a parsec is a measure of distance !"

          See icon!

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

          ""Yes, but how fast was Han Solo when he made the Kessel Run in 12 parsecs?""

          Though I know this was a straight up scientific error in the film, it could actually be possible as an explanation. Suppose in a world of hyperluminal travel there is a star between you and the destination, which is 11 parsecs away. Your path of least action is also the longest path. The more energy you have available the closer you can pass to the star, and the shorter your path will be. Since you're moving in 4-dimensional spacetime, you can express the path equally in terms of time and distance since the one will determine the other. Since time is relative to the observer Han Solo would state the distance in parsecs, because his perceived time for the trip would be different from that of an observer, whereas once parked on the destination both he and the observer would agree fairly closely on the path length.

          I think there is something similar with sailing ships. The closer a ship can sail to the wind, the shorter the path it can take, say, across the Atlantic. A tea clipper would not only be faster than HMS Victory on that route, it would potentially need a shorter distance because it could sail more northerly.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

            "Though I know this was a straight up scientific error in the film,"

            What film ?

            1. Richard 12 Silver badge

              Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

              The Historical Documents.

        3. cray74

          Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

          AFAIK a parsec is a measure of distance !

          Correct, and Han Solo made the run in a record short distance: 12 parsecs. Other pilots took longer routes to complete the Kessel Run.

    3. channel extended

      Re: 19,000,000 km/h ?

      I like to measure thing in Angstroms per century. Just to get a good feel for the magnitude.

      PS I also like writing down zeros. So it's about 1.66x10^25 or 16600000000000000000000000.

  5. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

    19,000,000 km/h = 176.0433 % of the maximum velocity of a sheep in a vacuum.

    Yep, that's pretty fast.

    1. Chris Miller

      I think you mean 1.76...% (unless your sheep have access to warp drive).

      1. Chemist

        "unless your sheep have access to warp drive"

        warp and weft drive in fact

  6. Pirate Dave
    Pirate

    Has it been expanding at that rate the entire 444 years? If so, my sloppy calculations say it should be around 1,086,379,368,040,875.4 brontosauri across. That'd be over 93 trillion miles here in 'Murca, and just under 16 light-years (although that seems wrong but, eh, I did say it's "sloppy")

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Well it certainly can't speed up, so if it is expanding at 0.0176c now then your sloppy calculation should be roughly correct for the diameter of the wave front.

  7. adnim
    Joke

    Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

    "Although the remnant is approximately circular, there are clear differences in the speed of the blast wave in different regions. The speed in the right and lower right directions is about twice as large as that in the left and the upper left directions."

    I think the Universe is cat shaped

    1. DougS Silver badge

      Re: Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

      Artist's renderings of what our galaxy would look like from afar bear a striking resemblance to a sphincter. That would explain a lot about our world.

      1. Chris G Silver badge

        Re: Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

        Would also explain Klingons!

        1. Unicornpiss Silver badge
          Joke

          Re: Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

          ...and of course the Captain's log.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

      "I think the Universe is cat shaped"

      It's turtles, all the way down.

    3. Stoneshop Silver badge

      Re: Why indeed the observable Universe may not be spherical...

      I think the Universe is cat shaped

      Whatever it is, it's not at all shaped like a spherical cow of uniform density.

  8. DeKrow
    Trollface

    Consensus?

    Is there scientific consensus for any of the statistics or results mentioned in this article? Seems like a bunch of the information comes from NASA who have been promoting things like climate change. How can we believe any of this guff?

  9. MT Field
    Boffin

    Isn't that the thing that threatens to destroy the ship, but turns out to be the toy of a galactic super-being toddler?

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