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A SNR is the leftover of a supernova (SN), the explosion of a star. The panel shows an observation of the Tycho SNR. The blast wave from the SN (red sphere) propagates outward through the interstellar medium (ISM) and a reverse shock (lightblue sphere) propagates inward through the stellar debris (ejecta). Dust forms in the still unshocked ejecta with temperatures of a few degrees. The material between the two shocks is very hot (tens of millions of degrees) and subject to hydrodynamic instability that develops at the interface between shocked ejecta and shocked ISM. This is the mixing region where the ISM material is enriched by heavy elements synthesized in the progenitor star and SN. A neutron star can be produced by the SN (near the SNR center). The SNR can interact with interstellar clouds (on the right) and cosmic rays are accelerated at the shock fronts (arrows), producing synchrotron emission. A SNR model can be found here.
Credits: INAF/OAPA; Tycho image by NASA/CXC/SAO.