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Supernovae were named because they were objects that appeared to be bright 'new' stars, that hadn't been observed before in the well-known heavens. Of course, the name is actually a bit ironic, since supernovae are actually stars at the end of their life cycle, stars that are going out with a bang, so to speak.

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Imagine the Universe! is a service of the High Energy Astrophysics Science Archive Research Center (HEASARC), Dr. Alan Smale (Director), within the Astrophysics Science Division (ASD) at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center.

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This page last updated: Wednesday, 17-Nov-2004 14:14:00 EST