Latest Astronomical objects Stories

Planet-Forming Dust Abruptly Disappears Around Star
2012-07-05 05:10:33

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online One star pinpointed as a prime location for a planet-forming disk decided enough was enough, and closed-up shop suddenly. While observing TYC 824126521, a young star located about 456 light years from Earth, researchers discovered that the planet-forming dust that once surrounded the star abruptly disappeared. Between 2008, when the star was being observed by a powerful infrared telescope in Chile, and 2010, when NASA's WISE...

Voyager 1 Entering Interstellar Space
2012-06-15 13:52:45

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com After several decades of making a lonely journey across our solar system, Voyager 1 has signaled to NASA that it may have reached the edge of interstellar space. The spacecraft, which launched in 1977, is now roughly 11 billion miles away and traveling at 6 miles per second. NASA said it takes Voyager 1's data 16 hours and 38 minutes to reach the antennas of its Deep Space Network on Earth. Data from the spacecraft indicates that the 34-year-old...

Study Finds Space Dust Gives Asteroids Their Shape
2012-02-28 12:10:28

Japanese researchers discovered while studying grains of dust from the Itokawa asteroid that tiny particles of space dust bombard asteroids and give them their shape. The researchers analyzed the size, mineralogy, shape and geochemistry of five dust grains recovered by the Japanese asteroid probe Hayabusa. Hayabusa succeeded in returning over 1,500 grains of dust from the asteroid Itokawa when it parachuted into the Australian outback in June 2010. "Our findings show the landscape...

Image 1 - APEX Images Cosmic Dust Filament Light-years Long
2012-02-15 06:23:25

[ Video 1 ] | [ Video 2 ] Star formation in “dark markings of the sky” A new image from the APEX (Atacama Pathfinder Experiment) telescope in Chile shows a sinuous filament of cosmic dust more than ten light-years long. In it, newborn stars are hidden, and dense clouds of gas are on the verge of collapsing to form yet more stars. It is one of the regions of star formation closest to us. The cosmic dust grains are so cold that observations at wavelengths of around one...

Alien Matter In The Solar System: A Galactic Mismatch
2012-02-12 05:14:50

[ Watch the Video ] This just in:  The Solar System is different from the space just outside it. Researchers announced the finding at a press conference on Jan. 31, 2012. It´s based on data from NASA´s IBEX spacecraft, which is able to sample material flowing into the solar system from interstellar space. “We´ve detected alien matter that came into our solar system from other parts of the galaxy--and, chemically speaking, it´s not exactly like what we...

Image 1 - New 'Alien' Particles Have Entered Our Solar System
2012-01-31 13:59:55

[ Watch the Video ] Researchers have measured neutral "alien" particles that have entered our solar system from interstellar space. The team used NASA's Interstellar Boundary Explorer (IBEX) spacecraft to find the neutral particles, which make up about half the material outside the heliosphere. The heliosphere is the bubble in which our Sun and planets reside and is formed by the interaction between the solar wind and the interstellar medium. Electrically charged particles cannot...

Sweet Spots For The Formation Of Complex Organic Molecules In The Galaxy
2011-11-03 04:54:28

Scientists within the New York Center for Astrobiology at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have compiled years of research to help locate areas in outer space that have extreme potential for complex organic molecule formation. The scientists searched for methanol, a key ingredient in the synthesis of organic molecules that could lead to life. Their results have implications for determining the origins of molecules that spark life in the cosmos. The findings will be published in the Nov. 20...

2011-11-02 21:23:39

RIT professor co-authors Nature article and Gemini Observatory's 1,000th paper The discovery of 13 diffuse interstellar bands with the longest wavelengths to date could someday solve a 90-year-old mystery. Astronomers have identified the new bands using data collected by the Gemini North telescope of stars in the center of the Milky Way. Nature reports on its website today findings that support recent ideas about the presence of large, possibly carbon-based organic...

Astronomers Find Complex Organic Matter In The Universe
2011-10-27 04:25:04

In the Oct. 26 issue of the journal Nature, astronomers report that organic compounds of unexpected complexity exist throughout the Universe. The results suggest that complex organic compounds are not the sole domain of life but can be made naturally by stars. Prof. Sun Kwok and Dr. Yong Zhang of the University of Hong Kong show that an organic substance commonly found throughout the Universe contains a mixture of aromatic (ring-like) and aliphatic (chain-like) components. The compounds...

Latest Astronomical objects Reference Libraries

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Interstellar Cloud -- Interstellar cloud is the generic name given to accumulations of gas and dust in our galaxy. Depending on the density, size and temperature of a given cloud, the hydrogen in it can be neutral (HI clouds) or molecular (molecular clouds). Chemical compositions Analysing the composition of interstellar clouds is achieved by studying electromagnetic radiation that we receive from them. Large radio telescopes scan the intensity in the sky of particular frequencies of...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Solar Wind -- Solar wind, a stream of particles (mostly high-energy protons ~ 500 Kev) that is continually ejected from the surface of the Sun. The composition of this plasma is identical to the Sun's corona, 73% hydrogen and 25% helium with the remainder as trace impurities, and is ionized. Near Earth, the velocity of the solar wind varies from 200km/s-889km/s. The average is 450 km/s. Approximately 3000 tons of material is lost from the Sun every hour as solar wind. Since solar...

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Word of the Day
  • A large punch-bowl of the eighteenth century, usually of silver and with a movable rim, and decorated with flutings and a scalloped edge. It was also used for cooling and carrying wine-glasses.
  • A kind of cotton handkerchief having white spots on a colored ground, the spots being produced by a chemical which discharges the color.
This word is possibly named after Monteith (Monteigh), 'an eccentric 17th-century Scotsman who wore a cloak scalloped at the hem.'