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supernova

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noun su·per·no·va \ˌsü-pər-ˈnō-və\

Simple Definition of supernova

  • astronomy : the explosion of a star that causes the star to become extremely bright

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of supernova

  1. 1 :  the explosion of a star in which the star may reach a maximum intrinsic luminosity one billion times that of the sun

  2. 2 :  one that explodes into prominence or popularity; also :  superstar

Examples of supernova in a sentence

  1. <tragically, a shoulder injury cut short the pitching career of one of baseball's brightest supernovas>



Did You Know?

A nova, despite its name, isn't actually a "new" star, but rather one that wasn't noticed until it exploded, when it may increase in brightness by a million times before returning to its previous state a few days later. A supernova is far larger; a star in its supernova state may emit a billion times as much light as previously. After a few weeks it begins to dim, until it eventually ceases to exist; it's often replaced by a black hole. (Though remains that were shot out into space may survive; those of a great supernova seen in A.D. 1054 are now known as the Crab Nebula.) All this may serve as a warning to those human stars whose fame explodes too rapidly; supernovas of this kind have sometimes vanished by the following year.

Origin and Etymology of supernova

New Latin


First Known Use: 1926


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