A supernova is the term for what takes place when a star explodes. Supernovae are known for the immense amount of dust, gas, radiation energy and light that they generate. For example, a supernova has the potential to drown out an entire galaxy with its brightness. It can also become “billions of times as bright as the sun.”
Additional citation: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supernova
A supernova occurs at the end of a star’s lifetime, often when it’s nuclear fuel is used up and it implodes under its own weight. A supernova releases a huge amount of energy, which comes from the force of the star collapsing in on itself due to gravity. The explosion also sends the elements of a star’s atmosphere flying out into interstellar space; these elements may eventually end up forming part of a planetary system. In the Milky Way Galaxy, a supernova explosion occurs about once every hundred years.
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