Supernova PSN J14095513+1731556 in NGC 5490: an image (18 Feb. 2015)
The Universe is so huge that ever the most active observers are continuously facing new gems floating in the outer space. This also happens every time you slew your telescope to a new object, like a possible supernova recently discovered, hosted in galaxy you likely never saw or heard of earlier. Often the object you want to see is in the same spot hosting another beautiful one, making the observing experience possible more rewarding.
Here it is a nice example coming from last night, when at Virtual Telescope we wanted to confirm a new supernova, as part of our follow-up program in this field. The transient PSN J14095513+1731556 is hosted by NGC 5490, an elliptical galaxy in Bootes, likely at 200 millions of light years from us. As soon as our robotic telescope centered it, capturing the first quick images, it was clear that another galaxy was sharing the same part of the sky, IC 983: that is a gorgeous spiral galaxy, more or less at the same distance.
Spectroscopy made at the European Southern Observatory indicates this is a type Ia supernova.
This image above comes from the average of three, 120-seconds exposures, unfiltered, remotely collected with the PlaneWave 17″+Paramount ME+SBIG STL-6303E robotic unit part of the Virtual Telescope Project. The supernova was estimated at mag. 16.9 (R mags for the reference stars from UCAC-4).
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