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Updated: 23 hours 32 min ago
A riot of color and light dances through this peculiarly shaped galaxy, NGC 5256. Its smoke-like plumes are flung out in all directions and the bright core illuminates the chaotic regions of gas and dust swirling through the galaxy's center. Its odd structure is due to the fact that this is not one galaxy, but two -- in the process of a galactic collision.
Three mathematicians have a different explanation for the accelerating expansion of the universe that does without theories of 'dark energy.' Einstein's original equations for General Relativity actually predict cosmic acceleration due to an 'instability,' they argue in a new paper.
Following a gold rush of exoplanet discovery, the next step in the search for life is determining which of the known exoplanets are proper candidates for life -- and for this, a cross-disciplinary approach is essential.
Insights from NASA's Mars Atmosphere and Volatile Evolution, or MAVEN, mission about the loss of the Red Planet's atmosphere can help scientists understand the habitability of rocky planets orbiting other stars.
Immense northern storms on Saturn can disturb atmospheric patterns at the planet's equator, finds the international Cassini mission.
The OmegaCAM camera on ESO's VLT Survey Telescope has captured this glittering view of the stellar nursery called Sharpless 29. Many astronomical phenomena can be seen in this giant image, including cosmic dust and gas clouds that reflect, absorb, and re-emit the light of hot young stars within the nebula.
If you could fly aboard NASA's Dawn spacecraft, the surface of dwarf planet Ceres would generally look quite dark, but with notable exceptions. These exceptions are the hundreds of bright areas that stand out in images Dawn has returned. Now, scientists have a better sense of how these reflective areas formed and changed over time -- processes indicative of an active, evolving world.
It's beginning to look a lot like the holiday season in this Hubble Space Telescope image of a blizzard of stars, which resembles a swirling snowstorm in a snow globe. The stars are residents of the globular star cluster Messier 79 (also known as M79 or NGC 1904), located 41,000 light-years from Earth, in the constellation Lepus.
A Langmuir probe, flown to Saturn on the Cassini spacecraft, has made exciting discoveries in the atmosphere of the planet. They discovered that there is a strong coupling, both chemically and electrically, between the atmosphere of Saturn and its rings.
Astronomers have used two Australian radio telescopes and several optical telescopes to study complex mechanisms that are fuelling jets of material blasting away from a black hole 55 million times more massive than the Sun.
While people across North America took in the Aug. 21 eclipse, hundreds of citizen, student, and professional scientists were collecting scientific data, and their efforts are beginning to return results.
Three million years ago, the sun shone weaker, but Earth stayed surprisingly warm. Carl Sagan thought a greenhouse effect must have been to thank. A model built on 359 chemical processes has finally arrived at scenarios with a reasonable chance of producing the needed methane on ancient Earth. The model has broad parameters in hope that it may someday be of use to interpret conditions on exoplanets.
Astronomers have produced the most detailed map ever of the orbits of galaxies in our extended local neighborhood, showing the past motions of almost 1,400 galaxies within 100 million light years of the Milky Way. The team reconstructed the galaxies' motions from 13 billion years in the past to the present day.
Black holes are famous for their muscle: an intense gravitational pull known to gobble up entire stars and launch streams of matter into space at almost the speed of light. It turns out the reality may not live up to the hype.
Observations of two galaxies made with the National Science Foundation-funded Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) radio telescope suggest that large galaxies formed faster than scientists had previously thought.
Despite the absence of a global Earth-like magnetic dipole, the Martian atmosphere is well protected from the effects of the solar wind on ion escape from the planet. New research shows this using measurements from the Swedish particle instrument ASPERA-3 on the Mars Express spacecraft.
A science team in Antarctica is preparing to fly SuperTIGER, a balloon-borne instrument designed to collect heavy high-energy particles from beyond the solar system that constantly bombard Earth's atmosphere.
An international team of researchers ran multi-scale, multi-physics 2-D and 3-D simulations to illustrate how heavy metals expelled from exploding supernovae held the first stars in the universe regulate subsequent star formation and influence the appearance of galaxies in the process.
New observations push back the epoch of massive-galaxy formation even further by identifying two giant galaxies seen when the universe was only 780 million years old, or about 5 percent its current age.
A team of astronomers has detected the most distant supermassive black hole ever observed. The black hole sits in the center of an ultrabright quasar and presents a puzzle as to how such a huge object could have grown so quickly.