Stars and Supernovae: Crucial to Our Existence but Still Mysterious

One of the most striking facts that we know about the cosmos is that most of the chemical elements that ­constitute matter, including our bodies, were produced inside stars and ­distributed by their explosions. It is amazing how much we know about these distant objects that look like dots in the sky. It is ­mind-­blowing that the distant stars and their ­explosions turned out to be crucial for our ­existence. Yet, even today, we do not ­understand exactly how they are born or how they explode.