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More peculiar news from the heavens above (although I am not sure I I understand astrophysics well enough to articulate what makes it so strange).  Based on spectrographic analysis, scientists have identified a Type 2A supernova half-a-billion light years away “in” the constellation of Ursa Major. Unlike other supergiant supernovas of this category, the stellar explosion did not fade after 100 of our Earth days but continued to shine for 600 days—quite an explosion! (although explosions seen from 500 million light years away are already disquieting enough).  Also, supernova explosions are marked by spectral lines which reveal the dying star ejecting fast moving remnants—which are then followed by slower moving remnants.  In this case however there were no slower-moving remnants.

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A hint to what is going on with this star lies in the fact that it was apparently observed going supernova back in 1954 (although our observatories were much less sophisticated back then).  Perhaps IPTF14hls is a star which went partially supernova and then finally fully exploded in a bizarre and interesting way.  Maybe this foreshadows the fate of Eta Carinae—which I am sure is now gone.  I have always hoped we will see a stupendous supernova from Eta Carinae in my lifetime and this potentially bodes well.  However it also suggests that scientists need to work on their supernova behavior and prediction models.

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