Weirdo Supernova Explodes in Nearby Galaxy

A strange and sneaky type of supernova has exploded in a galaxy not so far away.

Called a type Iax, the supernova belongs to a class of explosions astronomers affectionately call "weirdos," because they look a lot like standard supernovae but come with a twist. It likely exploded earlier this month, and was spotted on Oct.29 by amateur astronomer Koichi Itagaki.

This morning, a team in Italy identified the explosion as a peculiar type Ia supernova.

"We’re interested in the weirdos in part because they’re fun, and in part because they’re extreme cases of physics going on that are easily noticeable," UC-Berkeley astronomer Alexei Filippenko said, when ...

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