Artist’s impression of merging neutron stars

This artist’s impression shows two tiny but very dense neutron stars at the point at which they merge and explode as a kilonova. Such a very rare event is expected to produce both gravitational waves and a short gamma-ray burst, both of which were observed on 17 August 2017 by LIGO–Virgo and Fermi/INTEGRAL respectively. Subsequent detailed observations with many ESO telescopes confirmed that this object, seen in the galaxy NGC 4993 about 130 million light-years from the Earth, is indeed a kilonova. Such objects are the main source of very heavy chemical elements, such as gold and platinum, in the Universe.

Forrás:

ESO/L. Calçada/M. Kornmesser

About the Image

Id:eso1733q
Típus:Artwork
Közzététel napja:2017. október 16. 16.00
Related releases:eso1733
Size:3840 x 2160 px

About the Object

Típus:Local Universe : Star : Evolutionary Stage : Neutron Star
Category:Illustrations

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