Progentiors of GRBs: Massive Stars

Largest Explosions in the Universe May Come from the Death of Massive Stars


Movie: A fading source...

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Caption:

A fading source observed over the span of 9 months with the W. M. Keck 10-meter Telescope in Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Darker colors correspond to brighter objects. The so-called transient afterglow of GRB 980326 (at the center of each image) clearly faded in the first month after the burst. The object at the center image was originally interpreted as the host galaxy. But a very long exposure in December (notice how much clearer star "f" gets) revealed that the "galaxy" disappeared. Not likely! Instead, the object at the middle picture is now argued by Bloom et al. in Nature to be the underlying supernova accompanying the gamma-ray burst. The size of these images on the sky is about the size of a postage stamp as seen across a football field.