The nearest type Ia supernova in 400 years has been found in the Messier 82 (M82) galaxy. First spotted on 21 January 2014, it is relatively close to Earth, about 11.4 million light years away! The BOOTES-2/TELMA image shown here (cortesy of M. Jelinek) was the result of 74 integrations 10-s each (unfiltered) taken close to maximum light, on 30 Jan 2014.
This supernova is called SN2014J (the 10th supernova discovered so far during 2014), and is a rare kind. “Type Ia” supernovae (SNe) are believed to be caused by exploding white dwarf stars. These SNe explode with very predictable brightnesses, making them ideal ‘standard candles’ to measure distances to galaxies accurately.
Now that it has reached maximum brightness, the BOOTES network will keep monitoring the SN2014J light-curve (along with other supernovae) for the next few months as part of the regular program conducted by some of the users. Indeed, many astronomical observatories worldwide (including space-borne facilities) will point to this unique target regularly over the coming weeks.
BOOTES: Burst Optical Observer and Transient Exploring System
( A world wide Network of Robotic Telescopes )
The Burst Observer and Optical Transient Exploring System (BOOTES), started in 1998 as a Spanish-Czech collaboration devoted to study optical emissions from gamma ray bursts (GRBs) that ocurr in the Universe.
The first two BOOTES stations were located in Spain and included medium size robotic telescopes with CCD cameras at the Cassegrain focus as well as all-sky cameras, with both stations located at 240 km each other. The first observing station (BOOTES-1) is located at ESAt (INTA-CEDEA) in Mazagón (Huelva) and the first light was obtained in July 1998. The second observing station (BOOTES-2) is located at La Mayora (CSIC) in Málaga and are fully operating since July 2001. In 2009 BOOTES expanded abroad, with the third station (BOOTES-3) being installed in Blenheim (South Island, New Zealand) as result of a collaboration with several institutions from the southern country. The fourth one (BOOTES-4) has been recently deployed in 2011 at the Lijiang Astronomical Observatory (Kunming, China).
The BOOTES Collaboration:
Alberto J. Castro-Tirado1, Martin Jelínek1, Javier Gorosabel1, Petr Kubánek1,2, Ronan Cunniffe1, Sergey Guziy1, Oscar Lara-Gil1, Ovidio Rabaza-Castillo1, Rubén Sánchez-Ramírez1, Juan C. Tello1, Carlos Pérez del Pulgar3, Sebastián Castillo-Carrión4, José M. Castro Cerón5, Tomás de J. Mateo Sanguino6, René Hudec7, Stanislav Vitek8, Benito A. de la Morena Carretero9, José A. Díaz Andreu9, Rafael Fernández-Muñoz10, Dolores Pérez-Ramírez11, Phil A. Yock12, William H. Allen13, Ian Bond14, Grant Christie15 , Lola Sabau-Graziati16 , Il K. Park17, Chenzou Cui 18, Yufeng Fan 19
1 Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía (IAA-CSIC), P.O. Box 03004, E-18080 Granada, Spain
2 Image Processing Laboratory, Univ. de Valencia, Burjassot (Valencia), Spain
3 Departamento de Ingeniería de Sistemas y Automática, Univ. de Málaga, Spain
4 Servicio Central de Informática, Universidad de Málaga, Spain
5 European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC), Villafranca del Castillo (Madrid), Spain
6 Departamento de Ingeniería de Sistemas y Automática, Universidad de Huelva, E.P.S. de La Rábida (Huelva), Spain
7Astronomical Institute, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic 251 65 Ondřejov, Czech Republic
8 Czech Technical University, Faculty of Electronic Engineering, Dep. of Radioelectronics, 166 27 Praga, Czech Republic
9 Estación de Sondeos Atmosféricos (ESAt) de El Arenosillo (CEDEA-INTA), Mazagón, Huelva, Spain
10 Estación Experimental de La Mayora, (EELM-CSIC), Algarrobo Costa(Málaga), Spain
11 Universidad de Jaén, Campus Las Lagunillas, Jaén, Spain
12 University of Auckland, New Zealand
13 Vintage Lane Observatory, Blenheim, New Zealand
14 Massey University, New Zealand
15 Stardome Observatory, Auckland, New Zealand
16 División de Ciencias del Espacio (INTA), Torrejón de Ardoz (Madrid), Spain
17 Ewha Womans University, Daehyundong 11-1, Seodaemungu, 120-750 Seoul, South Korea
18 National Astronomical Observatory, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing 100012, China
19 Yunnan Astronomical Observatory, CAS Kunming 650011, Yunnan, China
The BOOTES Former Collaborators: