Ten-year-old Nova Scotia boy finds supernova
Wednesday, November 6, 2013, 7:44 AM
It's in the stars for one Nova Scotia family that have a knack for finding supernovas.
Nathan Gray just became the youngest person ever to co-discover a supernova. The title was previously held by his older sister Kathryn.
“I was trying to beat her record in finding one to be the youngest person,” Nathan told The Weather Network.
Kathryn’s discovery earned her worldwide attention in 2010.
“Nathan was only three years younger, so at age seven, he saw his bigger sister find a Supernova and he’s been kind of at us ever since and saying I want do it too,” says the children's father, Paul Gray.
The images are taken at a friend’s home observatory in Halifax and sent to the Gray’s home computer for analysis.
Kathryn was out the night the discovery was made.
“When she got home from the school dance I just told her I might have found something,” Nathan says.
The discovery was verified by Nathan’s father who’s found seven supernovas himself.
Nathan adds that he has no plans of stopping at just one.
"I’m going to keep looking for some more. Right now I’m just kind of taking a break to do the interviews.”
But with his little brother watching closely, the new record may not last long.
Supernovas are extremely luminous and cause a burst of radiation that often briefly outshines an entire galaxy, before fading from view over several weeks or months.