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Smithsonian X 3D Explorer
(April Hobart, CXC): One of the most famous objects in the sky – the Cassiopeia A supernova
remnant – is now on display like never before, thanks to NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory
and a new project from the Smithsonian Institution. A new 3D viewer developed by the Smithsonian
allows users to interact with one-of-a-kind objects like the Wright Brothers airplane
and a 1,600-year-old stone Buddha. The only astronomical object in this special collection
is Cassiopeia A, or Cas A for short.
Back in 2009, scientists combined data from Chandra, NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope, and
ground-based facilities to construct a unique 3D model of Cas A, which is a 300-year old
debris field that was created when as a massive star exploded. This new Smithsonian viewer
will allow scientists and the public to tour this 3D model Cas A in exciting new ways by
being able to fly around the remnant themselves. Users can also get more information about
various parts of the supernova remnant by clicking on hotspots and following links to
more in-depth articles. So we invite you to take a 3D ride unlike any you’ll find at
the movie theater and explore Cas A in in a brand new one way.