Stars are not eternal; they are dying all the time in unimaginably large explosions, called supernovas. Second only to the Big Bang, the explosions are where the very essence of creation and destruction meet. Deep in the core of a massive star gold, lead, oxygen, and every other complex element, is created. When the star’s nuclear furnace runs empty these vital materials are hurled across space, creating all the planets, plants and oceans we see today. Supernovas even made us, right down to the iron in our blood. Only now have we begun to understand how these wonders in our sky work — and what they can teach us about the origins of the universe and ultimately, its future.