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10-Year-Old Boy Discovers 600-Million-Year-Old Supernova 214

minty3 writes "Nathan Gray, 10, from Nova Scotia, Canada, recently discovered a 600-million-year-old supernova in the galaxy PGC 61330, which lies in the constellation of Draco – beating his sister by 33 days as the youngest person to find a supernova. Gray made the discovery on October 30 while looking at astronomical images taken by Dave Lane, who runs the Abbey Ridge Observatory (ARO) in Nova Scotia. The Royal Astronomical Society of Canada confirmed Gray's discovery, but astronomers with the International Astronomical Union say they will need to use a larger telescope to make the finding official."
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10-Year-Old Boy Discovers 600-Million-Year-Old Supernova

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  • by cold fjord ( 826450 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @02:53PM (#45328313)

    I hope this gets shared widely in school science classes and among the home schooled.

    Science is open to people of all ages.

    • Brother-sister hate (due to competition) now goes cosmic.

    • In a galaxy far, far away, somebody else's kid probably saw it first.
    • I hope this gets shared widely in school science classes and among the home schooled.

      Science is open to people of all ages.

      not going to happen. do you really think the government wants kids finding spy sats and posting info about it online? i recall an incident where a kid asked what the object he found was and then his place was raided and they took his computer and telescope.

    • by fisted ( 2295862 )
      Wait. No. Would someome please think of the children?!
  • by Vanderhoth ( 1582661 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @02:53PM (#45328325)
    This sounds like something Leonard Hofstadter's family would do for Christmas. The sister's going to have a terrible "Why did you always have to out do me as kids!!?" Complex.
    • by mark-t ( 151149 )
      Carefull... or you might get a rant-on from an AC who's never heard of the show [].
  • by TWiTfan ( 2887093 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @02:57PM (#45328377)

    10-year-old boy gets credit for it.

  • Need Coffee (Score:4, Funny)

    by RandomUsername99 ( 574692 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @03:00PM (#45328423)

    Read that as 10-Year-Old Supernova Discovers 600-Million-Year-Old Boy

  • by themushroom ( 197365 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @03:09PM (#45328557) Homepage

    "You kids need to get away from the telescope and go outside to play!"

    • And get the hell off my lawn!

    • My mother always joked that she was the only mother in town that had to yell at her kid to stop reading and play outside. Of course, karma being what it is, I find myself trying to tell my oldest son to put his tablet computer down and play outside. I wonder what HIS kids won't want to put down when he tells them to go outside and play.

  • by JoeyRox ( 2711699 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @03:24PM (#45328717)
    And make sure you clean up your toys before going to bed.
  • 33 days (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Jonathunder ( 105885 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @04:33PM (#45329629) Homepage

    "...beating his sister by 33 days as the youngest person to find a supernova."

    If he's 33 days younger than his sister, their mom had a rough couple of months.

  • Ho-hum (Score:4, Funny)

    by Roblimo ( 357 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @04:36PM (#45329675) Homepage Journal

    "10-Year-Old Boy Discovers 600-Million-Year-Old Supernova" is a "Dog Bites Man" story. "600-Million-Year-Old Boy Discovers 10-Year-Old Supernova" would be serious real news. Wow!

    • The competition continues to find the greatest ratio in ages between things and things discovering them. So far the record is held by the last child born outside on a sunny day.
    • by Nemyst ( 1383049 )
      A 10 year old supernova would likely spell our doom, actually...
  • Dave Lane, who runs the Abbey Ridge Observatory (ARO) in Nova Scotia took the pictures.
    Dad (Paul Gray) set up the computer to align images.
    Dad set up the program to flicker the images between two panels.
    Dad gave daughter (in 2011) 52 images, she found a discrepancy on the 4th.
    Dad gave son some more images this year, he found discrepancy the same way.
    In both cases, Dad did the subsequent digging, comparing the data to known bursts, planetismals, etc. and declared what was found a nova.

    It's wonderful that the

    • You know how mind-numbingly boring a lot of top-level experimental research is? Perhaps your perception of how "science happens" comes only from Hollywood montage scenes, where excited researchers go from "huh?" to world-changing discovery in 23 seconds of upbeat music and cutscenes of random equipment (totally inappropriate for the task, and hooked up nonsensically). In the real world, slogging through hours of busywork is how "science" gets done, with brief flashes of "highly intellectual" work in-between

      • 99.8% right: the big team consists of Dave Lane and his supportive wife, both very wonderful people, btw. Trivia: Dave is also past President of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.
  • Did anyone else get a kick out of the photo they chose for that article? I can imagine how that went...
    "Hmmm, we're shooting for an article about finding a supernova...I know, point to it!"
    "This this?...THERE IT IS!"
  • I cannot believe.... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by DaveLaneCA ( 3420323 ) on Monday November 04, 2013 @06:15PM (#45330779)
    I really cannot believe the "garbage" that is getting posted here as comments to this news item. And no, I'm not just a "reader" ... I am part of the story as it is my backyear observatory that provides the images, both for Nathan and for his sister Kathryn and before that for others. We have discovered 5 in total. Providing opportunities for youth in science is one of the things I do - in this way and in many others ways (but principally through astronomy. What have you done today with your energy for the betteremnt of future scientists and technology professionals? (oh, of course, you trashed an achievement made by a bright kid that through this attention will probably have a brighter future, despite the critics. --- Dave Lane
    • Well said Dave. I'm also shocked that no one has replied with an obligatory "Surprised with off-topic garbage must be new here." ;-) Kudos to you, Paul, and Nathan. This will provide many, many, teaching moments and hopefully inspiration for other kids with an interest in science generally and science specifically.

"The eleventh commandment was `Thou Shalt Compute' or `Thou Shalt Not Compute' -- I forget which." -- Epigrams in Programming, ACM SIGPLAN Sept. 1982