Latest Astronomy Stories
Looking across the Mars landscape presents a bleak image: a barren, dry rocky view as far as the eye can see. But scientists think the vista might once have been quite different. It may have teemed with water and even been hospitable to microbial life. What changed?
Using the European Southern Observatory's Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array, astronomers have observed what seems to be windy weather surrounding a T Tauri star—considered to be an infant analog of our own Sun.
There are many kinds of eruptions on the sun. Solar flares and coronal mass ejections both involve gigantic explosions of energy, but are otherwise quite different.
As one team of experts has published a study claiming to have discovered hints of gravitational waves in stars, another has released a new galactic dust map that casts doubts on previous research claiming to have detected such waves earlier this year.
GREENBELT, Md., Sept. 22, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Accredited news media are invited to NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, on Friday, Oct.
When galaxies grow too massive to continue making their own stars, they begin cannibalizing other nearby galaxies, experts from the University of Western Australia and an international team of colleagues reported this week in the journal Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.
On Wednesday morning, Oct. 8th, not long before sunrise, the bright full Moon over North America will turn a lovely shade of celestial red. It's a lunar eclipse — visible from all parts of the USA.
On Sept. 10, 2014, NASA's newest solar observatory, the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, mission joined other telescopes to witness an X-class flare – an example of one of the strongest solar flares -- on the sun.
Astronomers have discovered a supermassive black hole in the ultracompact dwarf galaxy M60-UCD1, making it the smallest galaxy ever found to host one of these enormous light-sucking objects.
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...
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...
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...
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...
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...
- totally perplexed and mixed up.