Isolated Neutron Star Has Been Observed At 200,000 Light Years Away, Outside Milky Way


Astronomers used NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory and the European Very Large Telescope (VLT) in Chile observed, for the first time in the astronomy’s history, a special type of an isolated neutron star (E0102) situated outside the Milky Way, in the Small Magellanic Cloud, at approximately 200,000 light years away from Earth, as reported on

A neutron star is an amazingly dense space object that is formed when a massive star is collapsing within itself and incurs a supernova explosion. However, this newly discovered neutron star is unique as it presents a lower magnetic field than usual and, besides, has no companion star.

The recent observation of this special neutron star, dubbed as E0102, will assist astrophysicists in uncovering more details about this surprising space object which has been initially discovered in the ’80s.

E0102 is an isolated neutron star

E0102 was an oxygen-reach supernova but the residues left behind by the massive explosion of this supernova are of a great importance for the scientists who can comprehend in more details how massive supernovae, prior to exploding, are able to blast lightweight compounds into more massive ones.

Observed now by scientists, several thousand years after the explosion of the E0102 supernova, the oxygen-rich residues are the traces of the inside part of the dead star.

In accordance with the observations made with the NASA’s Chandra X-Ray telescope, the neutron star is encircled by a circle-shaped blast wave, followed by a wave of gases that is traveling slower.

In the middle of the image, there is a blue point that is, in fact, according to Chandra and MUSE readings, the neutron star, per se, which has formed about 2,000 years ago and is isolated by the wave of gas (depicted in red) and encircled, as mentioned, by the blueish blast wave.

Apparently, the isolated neutron star was either dislocated from its central position by the supernova explosion or it moves slowly. However, scientists hope that future observation will help them find more conclusive data about this puzzling far-distant space object.


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