(Copyright of AAO, photographs by D. Malin)

At the end of its life, a star more than about five times as massive as our Sun will collapse inward and then rebound in a cataclysmic explosion called a supernova. Within the debris of the explosion are radioactive nuclei that release gamma rays. These gamma rays are a unique tool to study the violent deaths of stars.

A service of the Laboratory for High Energy Astrophysics at Goddard Space Flight Center

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