Astronomy News

Astronomy News 2016-10-12T10:34:36+00:00

Sky and Telescope Astronomy News

  • Astronomers Catch Gravitational Waves from Colliding Neutron Stars
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    Spacetime ripples from neutron star smash-up usher in age of multi-messenger astronomy. So the rumors were right after all. On August 17, the Advanced Laser Interferometry Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO) registered tiny ripples in spacetime, produced by a pair of frantically orbiting neutron stars right before they collided. What’s more: telescopes on... Read more »
  • Seeing the Far Side of the Milky Way
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    The detection of a star-forming region 66,500 light-years from Earth, on the other side of our galaxy’s center, lends weight to the existence of an extended arm of the Milky Way. This artist’s view of the Milky Way maps the location of the Sun on one side and the star-forming region... Read more »
  • Aboriginal Australians Observed Red Giant Stars’ Variability
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    New interpretations of oral accounts by Aboriginal Australians show that they included references to the variability of red giants Antares, Betelgeuse, and Aldebaran. View of the Milky Way over one of the Australian Square Kilometer Array Pathfinder antennas, in the Australian outback. Credit: SKA Organisation/Alex Cherney/terrastro.com Australian Aborigines probably observed the... Read more »
  • Surprise! Dwarf Planet Haumea Has a Ring
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    When the distant dwarf planet Haumea briefly slipped in front of a star last January, astronomers found more than they expected. An artist's concept of Haumea and its narrow, dense ring, depicted with correct proportions. The ring is darker than Haumea's bright, water-ice-dominated surface.IAA-CSIC / UHU Observers across Europe had two years'... Read more »
  • Busy Skies Ahead: Comets, a Supernova, and a Dramatic Regulus Occultation
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    What's your pleasure when it comes to observing? Comets? Supernovae? Occultations? Get a sample of each (and more!) in the upcoming week. Among the several sky events happening in the next few days: a widely-visible Regulus occultation by the crescent Moon. Stellarium I like a busy observing week the same way... Read more »
  • Ancient Moon Had Atmosphere Made of Volcano Smoke
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    Roughly 3.5 billion years ago huge volcanoes released enough gas to cover the Moon with a thin atmosphere that was visible from Earth. This illustration shows the the Moon, looking over the Imbrium Basin, as volcanoes spew lava and gases, producing a visible atmosphere. Credit: NASA MSFC We are used to... Read more »
  • Asteroid 2012 TC4 To Zip Past Earth This Week
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    The close pass of near-Earth asteroid 2012 TC4 this week will give NASA a chance to test planetary defense coordination. A simulation of asteroid 2012 TC4 passing by Earth. NASA / JPL A small space rock designated 2012 TC4 will pass 50,150 kilometers (31,160 miles) from Earth over the South Pacific Ocean... Read more »
  • When a Star and a Binary Meet
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    What happens in the extreme environments of globular clusters when a star and a binary system meet? A team of scientists has new ideas about how these objects can deform, change their paths, spiral around each other, and merge. What happens when stars interact in dense environments, such as globular clusters... Read more »
  • Orbital Path Podcast: Journey to the Sun
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    Nicki Viall, a heliophysicist at Goddard Space Flight Center, shares her excitement over the Parker Solar Probe — the spacecraft that will allow scientists to "touch" the Sun. NASA The Sun is an elemental presence in our lives.  Warmth, light, cycles of day, night, and seasons are woven into our minds and... Read more »
  • Venus and Mars Kiss at Dawn
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    Be sure to set the alarm so you don't miss the squeaky-tight conjunction of Venus and Mars Thursday morning. They'll stay close through the weekend. Passing clouds magnify the beauty of a Venus–Jupiter conjunction on October 25, 2015. The two were just 1° apart. Mars and Venus will be four times... Read more »