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Latest Astrophysics Stories

Magellan Telescopes at Las Campanas Observatory
2014-05-02 04:46:11

John P. Millis, Ph.D. for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online In the normal course of evolution, galaxies initially formed stars as clouds of hydrogen and helium collapsed. Eventually the density and temperature of the cores would ignite nuclear fusion, allowing them to shine during what we call the main sequence phase of their lives. Eventually, stars will fuse heavier and heavier elements, with stars like our sun eventually culminating as balls of carbon and oxygen – in varying...

Star Wars Science: Revealing Real-World Physics Behind Plasma Shields
2014-04-30 14:13:47

[ Watch the Video: Shields Up! The Physics Of Star Wars ] Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Just as production of the next Star Wars film is starting to ramp up in London – student researchers 100 miles up the road at the University of Leicester revealed a report on the physics behind plasma shields used to protect battling spaceships and the massive Death Star. Published in the peer-reviewed, student-run Journal of Special Physics Topics, the new report concluded...

Caltech's Cosmic Web Imager Directly Observes "Dim Matter"
2014-04-30 03:53:16

Cynthia Eller, California Institute of Technology Caltech astronomers have taken unprecedented images of the intergalactic medium (IGM)—the diffuse gas that connects galaxies throughout the universe—with the Cosmic Web Imager, an instrument designed and built at Caltech. Until now, the structure of the IGM has mostly been a matter for theoretical speculation. However, with observations from the Cosmic Web Imager, deployed on the Hale 200-inch telescope at Palomar Observatory,...

Brightening Star Offers Astronomers New Way To Study Binary Systems
2014-04-22 10:48:49

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Researchers searching for planets orbiting around a distant star look for a signature dimming of that star’s light, but what if the distant star suddenly gets a bit brighter? Astronomers from the University of Washington observed just such a phenomenon, but instead of concluding they had found an ‘upside-down’ planet, the scientists realized they had found a new way to study binary star systems, according to their report...

What's Lurking Beneath The Surface Of The Sun?
2014-04-21 12:49:25

NASA Like a balloon bobbing along in the air while tied to a child's hand, a tracer has been found in the sun's atmosphere to help track the flow of material coursing underneath the sun's surface. New research that uses data from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, to track bright points in the solar atmosphere and magnetic signatures on the sun's surface offers a way to probe the star's depths faster than ever before. The technique opens the door for near real-time mapping of...

Hubble Images Cross-Section Of The Universe
2014-04-17 12:40:22

[ Watch the Video: Zooming In On CLASS B1608+656 ] ESA/NASA An image of a galaxy cluster taken by the NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope gives a remarkable cross-section of the Universe, showing objects at different distances and stages in cosmic history. They range from cosmic near neighbors to objects seen in the early years of the Universe. The 14-hour exposure shows objects around a billion times fainter than can be seen with the naked eye. This new Hubble image showcases a...

Gum 41: A Study In Scarlet
2014-04-16 10:21:53

ESO [ Watch The Video: Zooming In On The Star Formation Region Gum 41 ] This area of the southern sky, in the constellation of Centaurus (The Centaur), is home to many bright nebulae, each associated with hot newborn stars that formed out of the clouds of hydrogen gas. The intense radiation from the stellar newborns excites the remaining hydrogen around them, making the gas glow in the distinctive shade of red typical of star-forming regions. Another famous example of this phenomenon...

Supercomputer Simulations Shed Light On How Black Holes Swallow Stars
2014-04-14 13:51:10

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online When a star orbits too close to a galaxy’s central supermassive black hole, it gets torn apart and sucked in by gravitational forces – a phenomenon known as an a tidal disruption. In a new study, researchers from Georgia Institute of Technology and the Max Planck Institute in Germany have used computational and theoretical models to describe the dynamics of these cosmic events that cause massive flares of light and energy....

Celestial Diamond Ring Created By Chance Meeting
2014-04-09 11:35:16

[ Watch The Video: Zooming In On The Planetary Nebula Abell 33 ] ESO Astronomers using ESO’s Very Large Telescope in Chile have captured this eye-catching image of planetary nebula PN A66 33 — usually known as Abell 33. Created when an aging star blew off its outer layers, this beautiful blue bubble is, by chance, aligned with a foreground star, and bears an uncanny resemblance to a diamond engagement ring. This cosmic gem is unusually symmetric, appearing to be almost circular...

Dark Matter Clues From The Center Of Our Galaxy
2014-04-03 13:57:46

[ Watch the Video: Fermi Data Hints At New Dark Matter Clues ] Francis Reddym, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center A new study of gamma-ray light from the center of our galaxy makes the strongest case to date that some of this emission may arise from dark matter, an unknown substance making up most of the material universe. Using publicly available data from NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, independent scientists at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (Fermilab), the...


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...

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...

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...

Physics
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
pungle
  • To take pains; labor assiduously with little progress.
This word comes from the Spanish 'pongale,' put it.
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