Appointment with the brightest supernova of the last ten years: it’s called SN 2023ixf and it’s so spectacular that it can be observed even with a small amateur telescope. “The small galaxy that hosts it, called Messier 101 and really beautiful, is 21 million light years away and the supernova, while discounting that distance, remains accessible with small instruments, such as telescopes with a diameter of 150 millimeters, very common among amateurs , which allow you to see it even from the city”, says astrophysicist Gianluca Masi, scientific director of the Virtual Telescope.
Many supernovae are discovered every year, but it is very rare to find one that is visible with a small telescope. To observe SN 2023ixf, Masi says, the telescopes will have to be pointed “not far from the zenith, not far from the rudder of the Big Dipper”. For the astrophysicist “it is a precious opportunity to witness the final stages of the death of a massive star, a dramatic and spectacular event”. Anyone who doesn’t have a small telescope at their disposal will still be able to follow the observation in the live broadcast organized by the Virtual Telescope on May 25, at midnight, and broadcast in streaming by ANSA’s Science and Technology channel.
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