The available historical records of supernovae occurring in our own Galaxy over the past two thousand years are reviewed. These accounts include the well-recorded supernovae of AD1604 (Kepler's SN), AD1572 (Tycho's SN), AD1181 AD1054 (which produced the Crab Nebula) and AD1006, together with less certain events dating back to AD185. In the case of the supernovae of AD1604 and AD1572 it is European records that provide the most accurate information available, whereas for earlier supernovae records are principally from East Asian sources. Also discussed briefly are several spurious supernova candidates, and the future prospects for studies of historical supernovae.
- Supernovae and Gamma-Ray Bursters
- Pub Date:
- 12 pages, 4 figures, to be published in "Supernovae and Gamma Ray Bursters", ed. K. W. Weiler, Lecture Notes in Physics, Springer-Verlag, Berlin-Heidelberg-New York