Japanese amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki discovers a supernova that exploded 63 million years ago | Sciences

Japanese amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki discovers a supernova that exploded 63 million years ago |  Sciences

Itagaki’s Honor Board is large and dignified. More than 100 supernovae have been found inside and outside our galaxy, including 3 comets, 5 new planets, and 5 bright blue variable stars; After all, he’s not a specialist in this domain.

Japanese amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki was able to observe a stellar explosion in the galaxy “NGC 4647”, which caused amateur astronomers and astronomers around the world to raise their telescopes into the sky to see this rare sight. Incident.

Rare event

GC 4647 is a galaxy about 63 million light-years away from Earth, which means that the ray of light we see today came out 63 million years ago.

It is believed to be an astronomical event This may be the so-called “supernova Ia”, a rare occurrence of stellar eruptions that occur only twice a century in our galaxy.

In this case, two stars orbit each other, one in the red giant phase and the other in the white dwarf phase. Because white has a high gravitational pull, it absorbs the red giant’s material very quickly.

Supernova discovered by Koichi Itagaki in the galaxy NGC 4647 (Flickr)

As the material of the red giant accumulates rapidly and strongly in its companion dwarf, rapid nuclear reactions begin to occur rapidly on the surface of the white dwarf.

If the amount of material transferred from the red giant to its white ally increases to a certain extent (the Chandrasekhar limit), it will explode and create a supernova.

World-class astronomy lover

This is not the first time an interesting supernova has been discovered, but in February 2020 he was able to capture another supernova near one of the Virgo galaxies “NGC 4636” located 60 million light years away.

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In 2016, Itagaki caught the attention of amateur astronomers and experts around the world when they discovered a nova, a star explosion smaller than a supernova, in Sagittarius.

Great and Honorable Itagaki Honor Board, More than a hundred supernovae have been detected Inside and outside our galaxy, there are 3 comets, 5 new planets, and 5 bright blue variable stars; After all, he’s not a specialist in this domain.

Galaxy NGC 4636
In 2020, Itagaki discovered a supernova near one of the Virgo galaxies (Wikimedia).

There are only 4 other amateur astronomers in the world who have achieved this amazing feat: Americans Tim Puckett, Jack Newton, Englishman Tom Balls and South African Berto Monard.

Itagaki was born on November 12, 1947, in the Japanese city of Yamagata, where he still lives and can discover new objects at his age.

Currently, Itagaki has 9 telescopes and several small planetariums that he uses to survey the sky daily for new objects on the slopes of Mount Sao near his home.

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