A supernova happens where there is a change in the core of a star.
The first type of supernova is in binary star systems when one of the two stars, a carbon-oxygen white dwarf, steals matter from its companion star.
Eventually, the white dwarf accumulates too much matter, causing the star to explode, resulting in a supernova.
The second type of supernova occurs at the end of a single star’s lifetime.
As the star runs out of nuclear fuel, some of its mass flows into its core.
Eventually, the core is so heavy it can’t stand its own gravitational force and the core collapses, resulting in another giant explosion.
A supernova burns for only a short period of time, but it can tell scientists a lot about the universe.
One kind of supernova has shown scientists that we live in an expanding universe, one that is growing at an ever increasing rate.
Scientists also have determined that supernovas play a key role in distributing elements throughout the universe.
When the star explodes, it shoots elements and debris into space.
Many elements found on Earth are made in the core of stars and these elements travel on to form new stars, planets and everything else in the universe.