Tag Archives | Astronomy


Scientists detect gravitational waves for the second time

About a hundred years ago, in his theory of general relativity Albert Einstein predicted the existence of gravitational waves, “ripples” in the fabric of space and time as a result of the universe’s violent and energetic processes, like a collision and merger of black holes or a collapse of supernova. Gravitational waves are difficult to […]

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Unusual carbon-based molecule detected 27,000 light years away

Astronomers have discovered an unusual carbon-based molecule – isopropyl cyanide – in the gaseous star-forming region Sagittarius B2. The discovery, made using the ALMA radio telescope array, suggests that the complex molecules needed for life may have their origins in interstellar space. The astronomers, from Cornell University, the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy, and […]

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Astronomers witness mysterious disintegration of asteroid

Using the Hubble Space Telescope, astronomers have witnessed for the first time the breakup of an asteroid into as many as 10 smaller pieces. The asteroid began coming apart early last year, but new pieces continue to emerge in the most recent images. The observations are reported in the journal Astrophysical Journal Letters. “Seeing this […]

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First exoplanet images from Gemini

After nearly a decade of development, construction, and testing, the world’s most advanced instrument for directly imaging planets around other stars is pointing skyward and producing its first images of planets outside our solar system. (The image at right shows the planet Beta Pictoris b, orbiting the star Beta Pictoris. The star is hidden behind […]

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Innovative fiber optic imager may soon photograph exoplanets

A new instrument that combines two high-resolution telescope techniques – adaptive optics and interferometry – has for the first time resolved in visible light the individual stars in the binary star system Capella, 43 light years from Earth. Astronomers using the instrument say it holds great promise for eventually picking out and imaging planets around […]

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Telescope Cleans Up Its Image

A new adaptive optics system has allowed University of California – Los Angeles (UCLA) astronomers to capture the first clear pictures of the center of our galaxy, including the area believed to harbor a super-massive black hole. The new system allows the Keck telescope in Hawaii to “see” clearly through the distorting effects of the […]

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New Infrared Cosmos Scan Underway

An ambitious new astronomical program is about to start searching the skies looking for some of the most remote and dimmest objects in the Universe. The newly developed United Kingdom Infrared Deep Sky Survey (UKIDSS) is said to be able to reach at least twenty times deeper than the largest existing survey conducted at this […]

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Solar System In A Hole

The first detailed map of space within about 1,000 light years of Earth places the solar system in the middle of a large hole that pierces the plane of the galaxy, perhaps left by an exploding star one or two million years ago. The new map, produced by University of California, Berkeley, and French astronomers, […]

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