Latest Compton Gamma Ray Observatory Stories

2011-06-30 06:57:38

In December 2010, a pair of mismatched stars in the southern constellation Crux whisked past each other at a distance closer than Venus orbits the sun. The system possesses a so-far unique blend of a hot and massive star with a compact fast-spinning pulsar. The pair's closest encounters occur every 3.4 years and each is marked by a sharp increase in gamma rays, the most extreme form of light. The unique combination of stars, the long wait between close approaches, and periods of intense...

2011-06-14 09:40:00

NEW YORK and WASHINGTON, June 14, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- UBM TechWeb's Light Reading (www.lightreading.com), the largest research-led media company serving the global communications marketplace, and Heavy Reading (www.heavyreading.com), its prestigious market research division, is collaborating with COMPTEL (www.comptel.org), the industry-leading association representing communications service providers and their supplier partners, to produce a one-day summit on Backhaul Strategies for...

2011-04-14 07:50:00

Like looking for Easter eggs in a lawn of long grass, the hunt for the Milky Way's most massive stars takes persistence and sharp eyes. In their stellar search through our Galactic backyard, astronomers have used powerful telescopes sensitive to X-ray and infrared radiation to find evidence for a substantial population of X-ray emitting massive stars. This image shows infrared data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope near the plane of the Milky Way galaxy. Both outlined boxes contain an...

2010-11-29 10:01:39

Just like archaeologists, who rely on radioactive carbon to date the organic remains from past epochs, astronomers have exploited the radioactive decay of an isotope of aluminum to estimate the age of stars in the nearby Scorpius-Centaurus association, the closest group of young and massive stars to the Sun. The new observations, performed in gamma rays by ESA's INTEGRAL observatory, provide evidence for recent ejections of matter from massive stars that took place only a few million years...

2010-09-21 11:10:00

Satellites are big. They cost a lot of money. At least that's the impression a couple of University of Maryland-College Park students had when they applied for an internship to help construct a satellite instrument with scientists at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. As the pair quickly discovered, nothing could have been farther from the truth. To their astonishment, the satellite that Saman Kholdebarin and Lida Ramsey helped to develop was literally the size of a...

2010-07-15 10:00:00

There are many cultural myths concerning black holes -- several of the myths are perpetuated by television and movies. Black holes have been portrayed as time-traveling tunnels to another dimension, or as cosmic vacuum cleaners sucking up everything in sight. Black holes are really just the evolutionary end points of massive stars. Somehow, this simple explanation makes them no easier to understand. On Thursday, July 15, NASA scientist Jerry Fishman from NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center...

2010-05-05 14:20:00

GREENBELT, Md., May 5 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Dr. Neil Gehrels, an astrophysicist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, has been elected into the National Academy of Sciences (NAS), an honor considered to be one of the highest awarded to scientists and engineers. (Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO ) The honor, which also yielded 71 other newly elected members, was announced recently at the 147th annual meeting of the Academy. Dr. Gehrels pioneering...

2010-04-20 06:55:00

In its first five years in orbit, NASA's Swift satellite has given astronomers more than they could have hoped for. Its discoveries range from a nearby nascent supernova to a blast so far away that it happened when our universe was only 5 percent of its present age. Swift primarily studies gamma-ray bursts (GRBs) -- the biggest and most mysterious explosions in the cosmos. On April 13, the spacecraft's "burst-o-meter" cataloged its 500th GRB. "On the one hand, it's just a number, but on the...

2010-03-03 08:31:59

One of the pleasures of perusing ancient maps is locating regions so poorly explored that mapmakers warned of dragons and sea monsters. Now, astronomers using NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope find themselves in the same situation as cartographers of old. A new study of the ever-present fog of gamma rays from sources outside our galaxy shows that less than a third of the emission arises from what astronomers once considered the most likely suspects -- black-hole-powered jets from active...

2010-02-17 07:06:12

New images from NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope show where supernova remnants emit radiation a billion times more energetic than visible light. The images bring astronomers a step closer to understanding the source of some of the universe's most energetic particles -- cosmic rays. Cosmic rays consist mainly of protons that move through space at nearly the speed of light. In their journey across the galaxy, the particles are deflected by magnetic fields. This scrambles their paths and...

Latest Compton Gamma Ray Observatory Reference Libraries

2012-03-24 09:56:35

Atlantis launched from Kennedy Space center on April 5, 1991 at 9:22 AM EST and landed at Edwards Air Force Base on April 11 at 6:55 AM EST. The shuttle orbited 93 times at an altitude of 248 nautical miles at an inclination of 28.45 degrees and travelled 2.5 million miles. The mission lasted 5 days, 23 hours, 32 minutes, and 44 seconds. The first spacewalk since 1985 was performed by two astronauts to test the ability to move themselves and equipment about while working on the planned...

2004-10-19 04:45:43

Gamma-Ray Astronomy -- Gamma-ray astronomy is the astronomical study of gamma rays. Long before experiments could detect gamma rays emitted by cosmic sources, scientists had known that the universe should be producing these photons. Work by Feenberg and Primakoff in 1948, Hayakawa and Hutchinson in 1952, and, especially, Morrison in 1958 had led scientists to believe that a number of different processes which were occurring in the universe would result in gamma-ray emission. These...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Hypernova -- A hypernova is a theoretical type of supernova produced when exceptionally large stars collapse at the end of their lifespan. In a hypernova, the core of the star collapses directly into a black hole and two extremely energetic jets of plasma are emitted from its rotational poles at nearly light speed. These jets emit intense gamma rays, and are a candidate explanation for gamma ray bursts. Theorists have come up with several plausible explanations for hypernovae. It may...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Gamma-Ray Burst -- In astronomy, Gamma-ray bursters (GRBs) are flashes of gamma rays that last from seconds to hours, the longer ones being followed by several days of X-ray afterglow. They occur at random positions in the sky several times each day. They are now believed to result from tremendous explosions in far away galaxies, during the creation of a black hole from a dying star or two colliding neutron stars. The black hole, surrounded by a rotating disk of matter falling into it,...

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This word is probably from the dialectal 'boldacious,' a blend of 'bold' and 'audacious.'