Latest Astrophysics Stories

Earth's Magnetosphere Doesn't Stop All Solar Wind From Breaking Through
2014-06-11 14:41:29

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Using data from four European Space Agency satellites that fly in formation in the Earth's magnetic field, researchers have uncovered new information on how the solar wind can break through the Earth’s magnetosphere and disrupt modern life. According to a new report in the journal Physical Review Letters, when the solar wind meets the environment around the Earth – an electromagnetic phenomenon called an asymmetric magnetic...

3 x-class flares
2014-06-11 08:40:19

UPDATE - June 11, 2014 On June 11, 2014, the sun erupted with its third X-class flare in two days. The flare was classified as an X1.0 and it peaked at 5:06 a.m. EDT.  Images of the flare were captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. All three flares originated from an active region on the sun that recently rotated into view over the left limb of the sun. ----- UPDATE - June 10: The sun released a second X-class flare, peaking at 8:52 a.m. EDT on June 10, 2014.  This is...

Magnetic Fields Counteract The Forces Of Supermassive Black Holes
2014-06-05 11:37:47

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A supermassive black hole sits at the center of most galaxies and a new study published in the journal Nature has found that super-powerful magnetic fields can have influence near and even counteract the forces of these black holes. "This paper for the first time systematically measures the strength of magnetic fields near black holes," said study author Alexander Tchekhovskoy, an astronomer at the University of California, Berkeley....

2014-06-05 10:38:27

New Jersey Institute of Technology The 1.6 meter telescope at Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) in California has given researchers unparalleled capability for investigating phenomena such as solar flares. Operated by New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), the BBSO instrument is the most powerful ground-based telescope dedicated to studying the star closest to Earth. On June 2, Distinguished Professor of Physics Haimin Wang joined NJIT colleagues at the 224th meeting of the...

Dissecting Dust from Detonation of Dead Star
2014-06-05 08:37:41

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A supernova occurs when a tiny white dwarf star detonates in a massive blast and a common class of these explosions, called Type Ia, occurs when two white dwarfs orbiting each other collide. Based on observations taken from the Spitzer Space Telescope, NASA scientists have uncovered evidence of a much rarer Type Ia supernova scenario – when a white dwarf feeds off an aging giant, to the point of explosion. According to a report...

2014-06-04 06:45:18

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Astronomers using the NASA Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope to study what they thought were two different classes of black-hole-powered galaxies known as blazars now believe that they may be one and the same. [ Watch the Video: Blazars: Artist Conception ] “We can think of one blazar class as a gas-guzzling car and the other as an energy-efficient electric vehicle,” lead researcher and Clemson University astrophysicist Marco...

Supernova Recreation Reveals How Interstellar Magnetic Fields May Have Formed
2014-06-02 10:03:18

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Using a laser beam 60,000 billion times more powerful than a typical laser pointer, researchers have recreated a small-scale supernova and revealed that cosmic turbulence may have boosted magnetic fields to the power seen in interstellar space, according to a new report in the journal Nature Physics. "Magnetic fields are ubiquitous in the universe," said study author Don Lamb, a professor in astronomy and astrophysics at the University...

may 9th cme IRIS
2014-06-01 02:30:27

Karen C. Fox, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center [ Watch the Video: A First For IRIS: Observing A Gigantic Solar Eruption ] A coronal mass ejection, or CME, surged off the side of the sun on May 9, 2014, and NASA's newest solar observatory caught it in extraordinary detail. This was the first CME observed by the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph, or IRIS, which launched in June 2013 to peer into the lowest levels of the sun's atmosphere with better resolution than ever before. Watch...

Supernova Progenitor Revealed
2014-05-22 06:28:27

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online For the first time ever, astronomers have directly confirmed that a rare and extremely massive type of star known as a Wolf-Rayet star died in a violent explosion known as a Type IIb supernova, and their observations will help scientists better understand the life and death of the progenitor Wolf-Rayet. While our sun is 330,000 times more massive than Earth, comprises 99.86 percent of the total mass of the Solar System, and has a...

JKCS 041 galaxy cluster
2014-05-22 04:43:40

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Many of the oldest and most massive galaxies reside together in enormous structures known as clusters, and now a team of astronomers has confirmed the existence of an unusually distant galaxy cluster – a group of 19 galaxies located at precisely the same distance of 9.9 billion light years. In research appearing in The Astrophysical Journal, Andrew Newman of the Carnegie Institution for Science and his colleagues explain how...

Latest Astrophysics 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...

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...

How Solar Cycles Impact Our Weather Here On Earth
2013-01-13 09:10:34

Solar cycles: what are they and why should we care about them? Solar cycles are made up of what are known as solar minimums (min) and solar maximums (max). We refer to a solar min at the time when the sun is not active with many sunspots, while a solar max is just the opposite when we see a large increase in sunspot activity. So how long do solar cycles last? Typically they run on what is known as an 11 year cycle from the max to the min and then start over again anew. As of 2012 we...

2014-01-12 00:00:00

Physics is a natural science involving the study of matter and its motion through space-time, along with related concepts such as energy and force. On a broader scale, it also involves the general analysis of nature, conducted in order to understand how the universe behaves. Physics is one of the oldest academic disciplines, perhaps the oldest through its inclusion of astronomy. Physics was part of natural philosophy until the Scientific Revolution in the 16th century, when the natural...

Astronomy and Astrophysics Review
2012-04-25 09:55:47

The Astronomy and Astrophysics Review is a peer-reviewed scientific journal published quarterly by Springer Science Business Media. The editor-in-chief is Thierry Courvoisier. It was first published in April 1989. The journal covers all areas of astronomy and astrophysics, including cosmic ray physics, studies in the solar system, astrobiology, developments in laboratory or particle physics relevant to astronomy, instrumentation, computational or statistical methods with specific...

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Word of the Day
  • A gigantic fictional humanoid alien god being described with a head resembling an octopus and dragon wings and claws, around whom an insane cult developed.
  • Pertaining to the mythos of Cthulhu and additional otherworldly beings created by H. P. Lovecraft or inspired by his writings and imitators.
This word was invented in 1926 by H.P. Lovecraft for his short story, 'The Call of Cthulhu.' 'Cthulhu' may be based on the word 'chthonic,' which in Greek mythology refers to the underworld.