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Nova in Cassiopeia

Nova in Cassiopeia

Page updated 17 April 2021

A nova has appeared in the constellation of Cassiopeia. Novae are stars that suddenly undergo an increase in brightness of typically over a thousand-fold, so what looks like a new star appears. In this case, the nova is 8th magnitude, which is visible using binoculars. But while the star was expected to fade, it has remained almost constant in brightness.

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Meteorites from the 28 February fall recovered

Meteorites from the 28 February fall recovered

About 300 grams of meteorites have been collected in Gloucestershire following the fireball of 28 February, which was widely reported from around the UK and even from the Netherlands. And the meteorite was one of the rarest and most scientifically valuable of all types, a carbonaceous chondrite.

One of the fragments of meteorite recovered from Winchcombe. Credit: Trustees of the Natural History Museum

Using reports and photographs from dedicated fireball cameras, as well as security and doorbell cameras, it was quickly established that any meteorites from the event would have landed to the east of Cheltenham, with Winchcombe at the centre of the suspected fall area.

Within a day, a suspected meteorite was found embedded in a driveway. It was taken to the Natural History Museum for analysis, and a team of researchers began combing the area for more. More fragments were located in this way.

Chondrites are the most primitive and most pristine form of meteoroid, and can provide unique information about the conditions in which our Solar System was born, where our water came from, how the building blocks of life were formed and how the planets originated.

Read the full story on our Meteor Section website.