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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: 48 min 5 sec ago

NASA's SDO Reveals How Magnetic Cage on the Sun Stopped Solar Eruption

Fri, 2018-02-23 13:19
A dramatic magnetic power struggle at the Sun's surface lies at the heart of solar eruptions, new research shows.

Model based on hydrothermal sources evaluate possibility of life on Jupiter's icy moon

Fri, 2018-02-23 12:23
Scientists compare primitive Earth scenario with satellite Europa's conditions; the Jupiterian moon could host microorganisms at the bottom of a huge warm ocean located underneath its frozen crust.

On second thought, the Moon's water may be widespread and immobile

Fri, 2018-02-23 12:23
A new analysis of data from two lunar missions finds evidence that the Moon's water is widely distributed across the surface and is not confined to a particular region or type of terrain.

Improved Hubble yardstick gives fresh evidence for new physics in the universe

Thu, 2018-02-22 16:20
Astronomers have used NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to make the most precise measurements of the expansion rate of the universe since it was first calculated nearly a century ago. Intriguingly, the results are forcing astronomers to consider that they may be seeing evidence of something unexpected at work in the universe.

Astronomers discover S0-2 star is single and ready for big Einstein test

Thu, 2018-02-22 10:36
A team of astronomers has found that S0-2 does not have a significant other after all, or at least one that is massive enough to get in the way of critical measurements that astronomers need to test Einstein's Theory of General Relativity. Up until now, it was thought that S0-2 may be a binary, a system where two stars circle around each other.

Amateur astronomer captures rare first light from massive exploding star

Wed, 2018-02-21 13:18
First light from a supernova is hard to capture; no one can predict where and when a star will explode. An amateur astronomer has now captured on film this first light, emitted when the exploding core hits the star's outer layers: shock breakout. Subsequent observations by astronomers using the Lick and Keck observatories helped identify it as a Type IIb supernova that slimmed down from 20 to 5 solar masses before exploding.

Magnetic field traces gas and dust swirling around supermassive black hole

Wed, 2018-02-21 12:29
Astronomers reveal a new high resolution map of the magnetic field lines in gas and dust swirling around the supermassive black hole at the center of our Galaxy. The team created the map, which is the first of its kind, using the CanariCam infrared camera attached to the Gran Telescopio Canarias sited on the island of La Palma.

Some black holes erase your past

Wed, 2018-02-21 09:13
Physicists insist on determinism: your past and present determine your future uniquely, per Einstein's equations of general relativity. They call this strong cosmic censorship. A mathematician found some types of black holes -- charged, non-rotating objects in an expanding universe -- that allow an observer inside the black hole to travel across a horizon into a place where the past is obliterated and there are an infinite number of possible futures for every initial state.

NASA's James Webb Space Telescope to reveal secrets of the Red Planet

Tue, 2018-02-20 12:47
Mars rovers and orbiters have found signs that Mars once hosted liquid water on its surface. Much of that water escaped over time. How much water was lost, and how does the water that’s left move from ice to atmosphere to soil? During its first year of operations, NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope will seek answers. Webb also will study mysterious methane plumes that hint at possible geological or even biological activity.

No relation between a supermassive black hole and its host galaxy!?

Tue, 2018-02-20 12:30
Using ALMA to observe an active galaxy with a strong ionized gas outflow from the galactic center, a team has obtained a result making astronomers even more puzzled -- the team clearly detected CO gas associated with the galactic disk, yet they have also found that the CO gas which settles in the galaxy is not affected by the strong ionized gas outflow launched from the galactic center.

Astronomers reveal secrets of most distant supernova ever detected

Tue, 2018-02-20 10:24
Astronomers have confirmed the discovery of the most distant supernova ever detected -- a huge cosmic explosion that took place 10.5 billion years ago, or three-quarters the age of the Universe itself.

'Ultramassive' black holes discovered in far-off galaxies

Tue, 2018-02-20 09:32
Thanks to data collected by NASA’s Chandra X-ray telescope on galaxies up to 3.5 billion light years away from Earth, an international team of astrophysicists was able to detect what is likely to be the most massive black holes ever discovered in the universe. The team’s calculations showed that these “ultramassive” black holes are growing faster than the stars in their respective galaxies.

The starry sky shows nocturnal animals the way

Mon, 2018-02-19 10:39
Nocturnal animals can use the stars and the Milky Way to find their way during the darkest hours.

Why we have yet to find extraterrestrial life

Fri, 2018-02-16 14:27
Are we alone in the universe? Few questions have captured the public imagination more than this. Yet to date we know of just one sample of life, that which exists here on Earth.

Hubble sees Neptune's mysterious shrinking storm

Thu, 2018-02-15 13:11
Three billion miles away on the farthest known major planet in our solar system, an ominous, dark storm -- once big enough to stretch across the Atlantic Ocean from Boston to Portugal -- is shrinking out of existence as seen in pictures of Neptune taken by NASA's Hubble Space Telescope.

Scientists discover almost 100 new exoplanets

Thu, 2018-02-15 10:57
Based on data from NASA's K2 mission an international team of scientists have just confirmed nearly 100 new exoplanets, planets located outside our solar system. This brings the total number of new exoplanets found with the K2 mission up to almost 300.

Supermassive black hole model predicts characteristic light signals at cusp of collision

Wed, 2018-02-14 18:19
A new simulation of supermassive black holes -- the behemoths at the centers of galaxies -- uses a realistic scenario to predict the light signals emitted in the surrounding gas before the masses collide, said researchers.

A lonely beauty

Wed, 2018-02-14 15:02
Beauty, grace, mystery -- this magnificent spiral galaxy has all the qualities of a perfect galactic Valentine. The galaxy NGC 3344 presents itself face-on, allowing astronomers a detailed look at its intricate and elegant structure. And Hubble's ability to observe objects over a wide range of different wavelengths reveals features that would otherwise remain invisible.

Rotating dusty gaseous donut around an active supermassive black hole

Wed, 2018-02-14 09:39
High resolution observations show a rotating dusty gas torus around an active supermassive black hole. The existence of such rotating donuts-shape structures was first suggested decades ago, but this is the first time one has been confirmed so clearly. This is an important step in understanding the co-evolution of supermassive black holes and their host galaxies.

New models give insight into the heart of the Rosette Nebula

Tue, 2018-02-13 08:44
New research offers an explanation for the discrepancy between the size and age of the Rosetta Nebula's central cavity and that of its central stars.