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New Supernova Discovery

Najnovisha(2) Astronomers have reported a whole new type of exploding star, or supernova, which seems to spew out calcium and titanium. While most press reports have focused on the calcium, it's the titanium that's really interesting - the finding could negate ongoing efforts to find signs of dark matter at the center of the Milky Way.

The team of astronomers, led by Hagai Perets, now at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, and Avishay Gal-Yam of the Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, presents evidence that supernova SN 2005E is distinct from the two main classes of supernovae: the Type Ia supernovae, thought to be old, white dwarf stars that accrete matter from a companion until they undergo a thermonuclear explosion that blows them apart entirely; and Type Ib/c or Type II supernovae, thought to be hot, massive and short-lived stars that explode and leave behind black holes or neutron stars.

Perets and colleagues describe a scenario with a pair of orbiting white dwarf stars, where one SN 2005E and arguing that it is distinct from the two main classes of supernovae: the Type Ia supernovae, thought to be old, white dwarf stars that accrete matter from a companion until they undergo a thermonuclear explosion that blows them apart entirely; and Type Ib/c or Type II supernovae, thought to be hot, massive and short-lived stars that explode and leave behind black holes or neutron stars. 

One theory of this new exploding system is that a low mass white dwarf steals helium from a companion until the mass thief becomes very hot and dense until the temperature and pressure ignited a thermonuclear explosion – a massive fusion bomb – that blew off at least the outer layers of the star and perhaps blew the entire star to smithereens. The helium is transformed into elements such as calcium and titanium, eventually producing the building blocks of life for future generations of stars.

The titanium is radioactive and emits positrons as it decays.  Over the past couple of years, there have been reports from experiments such as ATIC and PAMELA of an excess of positrons coming from deep space. This excess, it has been argued, is a signature of dark matter particles colliding. But if the new supernova finding is anything to go by, these explosions could be quite commonplace and they could be the source of the excess positrons.

While this does not prove or disprove the existence of dark matter, it challenges the interpretation that the excess positrons are coming from the annihilation of dark matter particles. The WMAP, which supports the "concordance (Λ-CDM) model" of the Universe with up to 73% dark energy, 23% dark matter and 4% comprising all the matter in observable universe, has been under attack. Critics state that claims for the existence of invisible, unknown forces, to support a Big Bang theory where it is admitted that over 90% of the universe it seeks to explain cannot even be detected, is not what Karl Popper would have called "science.". 

Casey Kazan via http://www.newscientist.com/blogs/shortsharpscience/2010/05/new-supernova-class-may-underm.html

Comments

I think you ought to read this article one more time...

"Perets and colleagues describe a scenario with a pair of orbiting white dwarf stars, where one SN 2005E and arguing that it is distinct from the two main classes of supernovae: the Type Ia supernovae, thought to be old, white dwarf stars that accrete matter from a companion until they undergo a thermonuclear explosion that blows them apart entirely; and Type Ib/c or Type II supernovae, thought to be hot, massive and short-lived stars that explode and leave behind black holes or neutron stars."

The first two lines literally do not make sense (at least not gramatically" and the last lines are repeated from the previous paragraph.... Also "until the mass thief becomes very hot and dense until the temperature and pressure ignited a thermonuclear explosion" is a semantic abomination.

Perets and colleagues describe a scenario with a pair of orbiting white dwarf stars, where one SN 2005E and arguing that it is distinct from the two main classes of supernova

Sure, Jacob... perhaps it should have read, "...where one is SN 2005E, and they argue that it is distinct..." or something similar; and, there is a redundancy in the description. So what? I got the point...

Are you interested in the grammar & semantics, or the possibility that science may have gotten something wrong again and a very astute observation of this discovery may prove it so?

Rick,

I personally am interested in both; the grammar & semantics and the possibility that science may have gotten something wrong again.

If the writer expects to be treated with any respect, grammar is one of the greatest requirements.

Also, I am disappointed to view the misleading headline:
"New Supernova Discovery Nixes Dark Matter Theory"
when the much truer statement is found toward the end of the article: "While this does not prove or disprove the existence of dark matter". Contradictory, no?

When scientific articles require sensationalist headlines can it still be considered science?

Hello, Leah. I hope you have taken good notice of the comments made by the other people above me as to how important good grammar is in your writing.

Isn't it interesting to actually see how the "established" beliefs in cosmology are now being torn to shreds? That is because of the new ideas being introduced into the science by all the fresh talent graduating from universities from all around the world. Of course, the argument here does not demolish dark matter, it just postulates from the evidence available, that we might not be dealing with dark matter after all.

I've said it before and I'll say it again:
There's no such thing as dark matter!
Dark Matter is just the name of an unknown "thing" that's happening in the universe. It's just an insert for an unknown variable that we are trying to discover.
Whether that's a new line of science, or even just unaccounted for atoms and particles in the vastness of space.

It's just like Socrates(maybe Plato?) who made up Atpantis to argue a point and said "Imagine that there was a place called Atlantis, but it's not real, for arguments sake say it sank"
Now all of the sensationalists and conspiracy theorists thin that it's real, even when it was originally and clearly stated that it wasn't. It never was

I belive you are on the right track but going the wrong way
It was some think Stephen Hawking said about black holes
just die and desapear. What if that black hole just disintergrates at the end of its life could that be dark matter

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