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Durham University

Department of Physics

Staff profile

Publication details for Prof David Alexander

Boggs, S.E., Harrison, F.A., Miyasaka, H., Grefenstette, B.W., Zoglauer, A., Fryer, C.L., Reynolds, S.P., Alexander, D.M., An, H., Barret, D., Christensen, F.E., Craig, W.W., Forster, K., Giommi, P., Hailey, C.J., Hornstrup, A., Kitaguchi, T., Koglin, J.E., Madsen, K.K., Mao, P.H., Mori, K., Perri, M., Pivovaroff, M.J., Puccetti, S., Rana, V., Stern, D., Westergaard, N.J. & Zhang, W.W. (2015). 44Ti gamma-ray emission lines from SN1987A reveal an asymmetric explosion. Science 348(6235): 670-671.

Author(s) from Durham


In core-collapse supernovae, titanium-44 (44Ti) is produced in the innermost ejecta, in the layer of material directly on top of the newly formed compact object. As such, it provides a direct probe of the supernova engine. Observations of supernova 1987A (SN1987A) have resolved the 67.87- and 78.32–kilo–electron volt emission lines from decay of 44Ti produced in the supernova explosion. These lines are narrow and redshifted with a Doppler velocity of ~700 kilometers per second, direct evidence of large-scale asymmetry in the explosion.