LIGO Detects Fierce Collision of Neutron Stars for the First Time

Crazy things are happening in our universe these days. Want to hear about one of them? On Monday, October 15th, two dead stars collided! Explosions that are like this, which by the way are really, really rare, created heavier elements in the universe like uranium, silver, gold, and many more metals. This is called a kilonova. The most recent one happened 130 million light-years from here. This fireball created a cloud of gold dust much bigger than the Earth. Thousands of astronomers reported the results of this amazing discovery on Monday. This event proved Albert Einstein’s prediction that space and time could shake like a bowl of jelly when massive things like black holes move around. The fireball was spotted in Chile. When it was first identified ,it was about the size of Neptune’s orbit and radiating about 200 million times as much energy as the sun. The fireball turned from blue to red. Sixteen days later, the radioactivity of these newly created neutrons keep the fireball hot and glowing. Dr. Metzger guessed that an amount of gold equal to 40 – 100 times the mass of the Earth could have been made over the last few days and then blown into space.Then, later on these pieces could be made into new stars and planets and maybe some time in the future, become the material for an alien generation’s jewels.    

I chose this article because my family and I both thought it was very interesting  because I never heard of a kilanova. This is important to the field of science because there have been very few kilanovas and scientists still have a lot to learn about them. This doesn’t have anything to do with what we are learning in science class, but I just thought it was very, very interesting. Thank you for reading my report on kilanovas. I hope you learned something interesting!!!                                                  

Annie 4L

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