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Astronomy Reaches Turning Point with Latest NASA Images

Antonia R.Antonia R.
Neutron Stars Colliding
Image: NASA

NASA has published phenomenal images from the collision of 2 neutron stars. After their merging, astronomers were able to detect the bending of spacetime for the first time, reports the BBC.

The collision of the 2 stars - more specifically pulsars - released a dense cloud of debris, while among the substances expelled were some of the most precious elements in the Universe - gold and platinum.

Scientists have also detected the bending of spacetime as a result of the crash between the 2 dead stars.

"This is a new window into our Universe, which is going to serve us surprises we never possibly thought could exist, " says physicist Stephen Hawking.

Neutron Stars Crashing
Image: NASA

NASA's images could lead us to finding answers to age-old mysteries - such as the origin of heavy metals in our Universe, as well as the source of mysterious radiation eruptions, which our satellites around Earth have detected.

The theory was that a collision of 2 dead stars produced bumps in space and time, in turn causing gravitational waves, along with flashes of radiation.

But this is the first time this phenomenon has actually been observed and it could lead to new breakthroughs in physics and astronomy.

A pulsar is a type of star near the end of its lifespan. Pulsars are composed entirely of neutrons and their density is enormous. Their diameter can reach up to 9 mi (15 km) and they spin extremely fast, up to 1000 rotations per second.

These stars are also called "dead" because they are incredibly dense, while their cores have long since burned out. Due to their density however, they release radiation in the form of what's known as gamma ray bursts.