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Astronomy news. New! Earth-like extrasolar planet found; double helix nebula; supermassive black holes, astronomy articles, astronomy pictures. Updated daily.
Updated: 21 hours 47 min ago

Massive dead disk galaxy challenges theories of galaxy evolution

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 2:51pm
By combining the power of a 'natural lens' in space with the capability of NASA's Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers made a surprising discovery -- the first example of a compact yet massive, fast-spinning, disk-shaped galaxy that stopped making stars only a few billion years after the big bang.

New virtual approach to science in space

Wed, 06/21/2017 - 2:51pm
A new approach to scientific exploration has been revealed by researchers, which they call exploration telepresence.

Ten near-Earth size planets in habitable zone of their star

Tue, 06/20/2017 - 12:33pm
NASA's Kepler space telescope team has released a mission catalog of planet candidates that introduces 219 new planet candidates, 10 of which are near-Earth size and orbiting in their star's habitable zone, which is the range of distance from a star where liquid water could pool on the surface of a rocky planet.

A unique data center for cosmological simulations

Tue, 06/20/2017 - 11:41am
Scientists have established 'Cosmowebportal', a unique data center for cosmological simulations. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

New branch in family tree of exoplanets discovered

Mon, 06/19/2017 - 12:02pm
Researchers have classified exoplanets in much the same way that biologists identify new animal species.

MAVEN's top 10 discoveries at Mars

Fri, 06/16/2017 - 1:40pm
Since its launch in November 2013 and its orbit insertion in September 2014, MAVEN has been exploring the upper atmosphere of Mars. MAVEN is bringing insight to how the sun stripped Mars of most of its atmosphere, turning a planet once possibly habitable to microbial life into a barren desert world.

Orion blazing bright in radio light

Thu, 06/15/2017 - 11:09am
Astronomers have created the largest image ever of the dense band of star-forming gas that weaves its way through the northern portion of the Orion Nebula.

Scientists make waves with black hole research: Water bath simulation

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 11:28am
Scientists have made a significant leap forward in understanding the workings of one of the mysteries of the universe. They have successfully simulated the conditions around black holes using a specially designed water bath.

Low-mass stars always born with a sibling: Many, like our sun, split up

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 9:19am
Though astronomers have long known that many if not most stars are binaries, the question has always been, Were they born that way, or did one star capture another? Astronomers teamed up to systematically study very young stars inside their nest eggs, called dense cores, in the Perseus molecular cloud and concluded that all sunlike stars are born as wide binaries. Most subsequently split up, while the rest become tight binaries.

Search for Earth-like planets: Try a statistical approach

Wed, 06/14/2017 - 9:19am
A team of astronomers seeks to change the way scientists approach the search for Earth-like planets orbiting stars other than the sun. They favor taking a statistical comparative approach in seeking habitable planets and life beyond the solar system.

Cloudy with a chance of radiation: NASA studies simulated radiation

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 6:51pm
NASA's Human Research Program (HRP) is simulating space radiation on Earth following upgrades to the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory. These upgrades help researchers on Earth learn more about the effects of ionizing space radiation to keep astronauts safe on a journey to Mars.

New insight into galaxy cluster's spectacular 'mini-halo'

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 2:52pm
New images give an unprecedented view, revealing multitude of new substructures that shed light on mechanisms creating the massive radio-emitting structure.

Galaxy alignments traced back 10 billion years

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 11:16am
The most massive galaxies in the universe have been aligned with their surroundings for at least ten billion years. This discovery shows that galaxies, like people, are influenced by their environment from a young age.

New strategy to search for ancient black holes

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 10:29am
An interdisciplinary team of physicists and astronomers has devised a new strategy to search for 'primordial' black holes produced in the early universe. Such black holes are possibly responsible for the gravitational wave events observed by the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory.

VST captures Eagle Nebula and close companions

Tue, 06/13/2017 - 10:21am
Two of the sky's more famous residents share the stage with a lesser-known neighbor in an enormous new three gigapixel image from ESO's VLT Survey Telescope (VST). On the right lies Sharpless 2-54, the iconic Eagle Nebula is in the center, and the Omega Nebula to the left. This cosmic trio makes up just a portion of a vast complex of gas and dust within which new stars are springing to life and illuminating their surroundings.

Jupiter is one old-timer, scientist finds

Mon, 06/12/2017 - 3:42pm
Jupiter is the oldest planet in our solar system, an international group of scientists has found.

SpaceX Dragon to deliver research to Space Station

Fri, 06/09/2017 - 7:31pm
SpaceX is scheduled to launch its Dragon spacecraft for its eleventh commercial resupply mission to the International Space Station June 1 from NASA's Kennedy Space Center's historic pad 39A.

Hubble applauds waltzing dwarfs

Fri, 06/09/2017 - 7:31pm
This seemingly unspectacular series of dots with varying distances between them actually shows the slow waltz of two brown dwarfs. The image is a stack of 12 images made over the course of three years with the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope. Using high-precision astrometry, astronomers tracked the two components of the system as they moved both across the sky and around each other.

The largest virtual Universe ever simulated

Fri, 06/09/2017 - 10:22am
Researchers have simulated the formation of our entire Universe with a large supercomputer. A gigantic catalogue of about 25 billion virtual galaxies has been generated from 2 trillion digital particles. This catalogue is being used to calibrate the experiments on board the Euclid satellite, that will be launched in 2020 with the objective of investigating the nature of dark matter and dark energy.

Composition of Earth-size planets in TRAPPIST-1 system

Thu, 06/08/2017 - 2:55pm
An astrophysics researcher has identified the possible compositions of the seven planets in the TRAPPIST-1 system. Using thousands of numerical simulations to identify the planets stable for millions of years, Quarles concluded that six of the seven planets are consistent with an Earth-like composition. The exception is TRAPPIST-1f, which has a mass of 25 percent water, suggesting that TRAPPIST-1e may be the best candidate for future habitability studies.