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Re: Hubble pinpoints red supergiant that exploded (Forwarded)

Subject: Re: Hubble pinpoints red supergiant that exploded Forwarded
From: Steve Willner
Date: 10 Mar 2006 17:17:12 -0500
Newsgroups: sci.astro
In article <eadc5$440f917f$c690c02a$7189@xxxxxxxxx>,
 anon1@xxxxxxx writes:
> Presumably neutrinos would pass right through the dust, hardly reduced
> at all, so our neutrino detectors would receive a full dose of
> neutrinos, much more than from SN1987a, a clear sign of a nearby
> supernova in progress. We'd know the approximate direction,

A very good point.  The neutrino detectors don't operate 100% of the
time -- anybody know the percentage? -- but if operating they should
easily detect the neutrinos from any Galactic supernova.

> could quickly scan that area with the space infrared telescope
> (Spitzer?) to confirm where it happened. So we wouldn't truly miss it.

It might take a while to get a look with Spitzer because of its
pointing restrictions, but a Galactic SN should be plenty bright for
ground based observing in the near infrared.  The problem would be
narrowing down the position from the (many degrees?) uncertainty of
the neutrino detection.  Scanning the sky with binoculars might
actually be the best way if the extinction isn't too large and if the
position isn't near the Sun.  Of course if the extinction is small
enough for the SN to be naked-eye visible, position will be no
problem.

> If by chance it was behind the Sun, the Sun wouldn't reduce the
> neutrinos much either, so we'd know where it was, and we could look for
> it after Earth moved out of line with the Sun.

Right.  And someone else mentioned SOHO, and there are ground-based
solar telescopes.  The key would be getting the first good position.

-- 
Steve Willner            Phone 617-495-7123     swillner@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Cambridge, MA 02138 USA                 
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