EMBARGOED FOR RELEASE: 4:00 PM EST, DECEMBER 17, 1998
RELEASE NO: NOAO 98-10

ScienceSelects NSF-Supported Research on the Accelerating Universe as the Top Advance in Science for 1998

The image issued with NOAO Press Release 98-10 is shown below in GIF format. You may also download a PDF version of this image or the individual images in higher resolution:

Image caption: Supernovae Are the Clues to the Accelerating Universe-The Journal Science Picks Top Advance for 1998: Supernova 1998bu in the near-by spiral galaxy, M96 illustrates the appearance of supernovae observed at the far greater distances necessary to see the effect of Einstein's cosmic repulsion.

The supernovae and their parent galaxies used to measure Einstein's cosmic repulsion are at distances averaging 10 billion light years-some 300 times further away than M96-and are much fainter and more difficult to discover and study. Galaxies at these distances are faint smudges of light little bigger than the stars in the field of M96 and their supernovae appear as points of light about as bright as the parent galaxy.

Dr. Nicholas Suntzeff took this true color image of supernova 1998bu near maximum brightness with the 0.9-m telescope at the National Science Foundation's Cerro Tololo Inter-American Observatory.

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NOAO is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA), Inc. under cooperative agreement with the National Science Foundation.


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