Home > Ephemeris Program, Observing, Supernova > 01/28/2014 – Ephemeris – A supernova found in a nearby galaxy

01/28/2014 – Ephemeris – A supernova found in a nearby galaxy

January 28, 2014

Ephemeris for Tuesday, January 28th.  The sun will rise at 8:05.  It’ll be up for 9 hours and 40 minutes, setting at 5:45.   The moon, 2 days before new, will rise at 6:40 tomorrow morning.

There is a new supernova in our skies.  It’s designation is SN 2014J and it’s pretty close as the things go, but not in our galaxy.  It’s in another galaxy M82 off the front of the bowl of the Big Dipper, and 12 million light years away.  It’s the closest supernova since supernova 1987A, which appeared on the last days of February 1987 in a companion galaxy to us the Large Magellanic Cloud.   While the latter was visible to the naked eye, this will stay a binocular object at best.  I’ll have a finder chart and more information in bobmoler.wordpress.org for those that may need it.  This is a special type of supernova that’s used for distance measurement in the universe called a type 1a and this will be a good time to fine tune the calibration.

Times are for the Traverse City/Interlochen area of Michigan.  They may be different for your location.


Links to more discussion of the new supernova and type 1a supernovae in general.
Finder Charts
821 finder chart 1

Finder Chart for M82 and M81. Actual time is 9 p.m. on January 28, 2014. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts)

Pointer to M81 and M82 is a line diagonally through the bowl of the Big Dipper from the star Phad γ (gamma) Ursa Majoris through Dubhe α (alpha) Ursa Majoris.  Note that the Big Dipper is not an official constellation but part of Ursa Major, the Great Bear.

M82 finder chart 2

M82 and M81 as seen close up. Note the spiral arms of M81 are invisible visually. Created using Cartes du Ciel (Sky Charts).

Discovery image

Discovery image of SN 2014J. Credit: UCL/University of London Observatory/Steve Fossey/Ben Cooke/Guy Pollack/Matthew Wilde/Thomas Wright.

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