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Latest Astronomy Stories

Organic Conundrum In Milky Way’s Satellite Galaxy, The Large Magellanic Cloud
2014-06-23 03:03:26

Royal Astronomical Society A group of organic chemicals that are considered carcinogens and pollutants today on Earth, but are also thought to be the building blocks for the origins of life, may hold clues to how carbon-rich chemicals created in stars are processed and recycled in space. Scientists have studied how polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are created in an aging population of stars in the Milky Way’s satellite galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud. They have found that...

Astronomers May Have Found Coldest, Faintest White Dwarf Ever
2014-06-23 14:57:23

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Using data from three different telescopes, a large international team of astronomers has identified what could be the coldest, faintest while dwarf ever, according to a new report in the Astrophysical Journal. The report said the temperature of the stellar vestige is so low, the carbon it contains has probably undergone crystallization, a process that results in the formation of a diamond here on Earth. “It’s a really...

3D Map Details Dusty Structure Of The Milky Way
2014-06-23 03:19:28

Royal Astronomical Society A team of international astronomers has created a detailed three-dimensional map of the dusty structure of the Milky Way – the star-studded bright disc of our own galaxy – as seen from Earth’s northern hemisphere. The map will be presented by Prof Janet Drew of the University of Hertfordshire at the National Astronomy Meeting (NAM) 2014 in Portsmouth on Monday 23 June. Dust and gas, making up the Interstellar Medium (ISM), fill space between stars in...

Star Measurement Made Easier With A Novel Spectral Ruler
2014-06-23 14:32:00

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Being hailed as a critical first step in a massive attempt to map the Milky Way, a team of European astronomers has devised a novel way to categorize stars based on their metallic composition, according to a new paper published in the journal Astronomy & Astrophysics. The study team developed their ‘spectral ruler’ by selecting 34 'benchmark' stars to characterize the distinct kinds of stellar groups in our galaxy, such as hot...

coronal puff
2014-06-23 11:26:58

Royal Astronomical Society (RAS) A suite of Sun-gazing spacecraft, SOHO, STEREO and Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), have spotted an unusual series of eruptions in which a series of fast 'puffs' force the slow ejection of a massive burst of plasma from the Sun's corona. The eruptions took place over a period of three days, starting on 17 January 2013. Images and animations of the phenomena were presented at the National Astronomy Meeting 2014 in Portsmouth by Nathalia Alzate on Monday 23...

Mountaintop Blasted To Make Room For European Extra Large Telescope
2014-06-21 08:41:46

Alan McStravick for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online It could be considered a form astronomical irony. A new telescope, the European Extra Large Telescope, or E-ELT, will be large enough to look all the way back to the beginnings of our universe, perhaps all the way to the famed Big Bang. And, to clear off a plot of land big enough to house the E-ELT in the southern hemisphere, the entire top of a mountain in Chile's Atacama Mountain range was removed with, well, a big bang. [ Watch...

2014-06-20 23:09:51

Sci-fi novella series introduces original characters in fictitious universe of author’s creation. Roanoke, VA (PRWEB) June 20, 2014 Author Randall Brent Abbott launches a new marketing campaign for his first novella in the Galaxy Probe Voyages series, the 2012 “Galaxy Probe Voyages: Keturah's Children” (published by iUniverse). Succeeded by the prequel volume, “Galaxy Probe Voyages II-VI,” which is a collection of five novellas, “Galaxy Probe Voyages” takes readers to...

Stream Of Gas Observed Escaping Grasp Of Supermassive Black Hole
2014-06-20 10:53:54

John P. Millis, Ph.D. for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The classic image of black hole systems is the in-flowing gas being consumed by the singularity. However, black holes are far from simply being cosmic vacuum cleaners, and occasionally even exhibit some strange behavior. Recently, a team of astronomers found a clumpy stream of gas quickly flowing outward from the supermassive black hole at the core of the galaxy NGC 5548. This unusual phenomenon was discovered when a...

Comet Siding Spring Won't Disrupt Martian Orbiters As It Makes Close Approach Of The Red Planet
2014-06-20 07:06:18

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Later this year, comet Siding Spring will have a very close brush with Mars. That brush will be so close, in fact, that it lead scientists to worry about the safety of the three spacecraft currently orbiting the planet. Some experts from the University of Maryland (UMD) have used a satellite mounted telescope to observe the "fresh" comet, however, and they find that it poses minimal danger to the Martian spacecraft. Instead, the...

2014-06-19 16:20:56

WASHINGTON, June 19, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An international team of astronomers, using data from several NASA and European Space Agency (ESA) space observatories, has discovered unexpected behavior from the supermassive black hole at the heart of the galaxy NGC 5548, located 244.6 million light-years from Earth. This behavior may provide new insights into how supermassive black holes interact with their host galaxies. http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnvar/20081007/38461LOGO...


Latest Astronomy Reference Libraries

Stellar Astrophysics
2014-01-12 00:00:00

The prominent feature that allows for the existence of life on Earth is the Sun. Radiation from our closest star provides heat and energy to our planet, driving biological processes and providing the necessary conditions for liquid water to naturally exist. But our Sun is only but one star in this vast Universe. And as it turns out, most stars are quite different than the one that illuminates our day. For this reason, scientists have, for hundreds of years, attempted to study the other...

Planetary Astronomy
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: Artistic concept of a planetary system. Credit: Wikipedia/NASA/JPL-Caltech The term Astronomy encompasses a broad range of topics, including the study of stars, galaxies, and planets. In order to focus on the different areas of study, many subfields of astronomy emerge. One such area is the study of planets known, appropriately, as Planetary Astronomy. Observational Planetary Astronomy Even within the field of Planetary Astronomy, there are several divisions to...

Cosmology
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: The Hubble Extreme Deep Field (XDF) was completed in September 2012 and shows the farthest galaxies ever photographed by humans. Each speck of light in the photo is an individual galaxy, some of them as old as 13.2 billion years; the observable universe is estimated to contain more than 200 billion galaxies. Credit: NASA/Wikipedia What is Cosmology? I once commented to an acquaintance that I was fascinated by the field of Cosmology, and mused that if I had more time, I...

Astrophysics
2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: NGC 4414, a typical spiral galaxy in the constellation Coma Berenices, is about 56,000 light-years in diameter and approximately 60 million light-years distant. Credit: NASA/ESA/Wikipedia What is Astrophysics? For much of the modern age the term Astrophysics has been used synonymously with Astronomy. This interchange is so common that many textbooks even offer the two as having the same meaning. However, from a strictly historical perspective there are differences...

Tropic of Capricorn
2013-02-21 13:31:57

The Tropic of Capricorn, alternately called the Southern Tropic, is a marker of the most southerly latitude on the Earth at which the Sun can be directly overhead. This occurs at the December solstice, when the southern hemisphere is tilted towards the sun at its maximum degree. It is one of the five major circles of latitude that mark maps of the Earth. It presently lies 23 degrees 26’ 16’’ south of the Equator. Currently, the Tropic of Capricorn is drifting towards the north at...

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Word of the Day
mallemaroking
  • Nautical, the visiting and carousing of sailors in the Greenland ships.
This word is apparently from a confusion of two similar Dutch words: 'mallemerok,' a foolish woman, and 'mallemok,' a name for some persons among the crew of a whaling vessel.