Latest Herschel Space Observatory Stories

ESA Discovers Origin Of Jupiter's Mysterious Atmospheric Water
2013-04-23 13:41:09

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online The European Space Agency (ESA) says it has unraveled the mystery as to the origin of water observed in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter. ESA's Herschel space observatory found evidence that the water in this part of Jupiter's atmosphere was delivered by the dramatic impact of comet Shoemaker-Levy 9 in July 1994. During this collision, a string of 21 comet fragments pounded into the southern hemisphere of Jupiter, leaving dark...

Kappa Coronae Borealis
2013-04-10 05:00:44

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel space observatory has snapped images of a dust belt orbiting a subgiant star that hosts a planetary system. The space observatory's sensitive far-infrared detection helped astronomers resolve bright emission around Kappa Coronae Borealis, indicating the presence of a dusty debris disc. The star is a little heavier than our own Sun at 1.5 solar masses, is around 2.5 billion years old, and sits...

Historian Says Sir William Herschel May Not Be A 'Sir' At All
2013-04-05 15:48:24

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online A paper written by the historian Michael Hoskin and published in the Journal for the History of Astronomy claims Sir William Herschel may not be a "Sir" after all. Hoskin says that William and John Herschel were both made a knight of the Royal Hanoverian Guelphic Order, an event that typically leads to someone earning themselves the title of "Sir." However, the historian said they were in fact not given the "Sir" titles at all....

Hunting High-mass Stars With Herschel Space Observatory
2013-03-27 13:09:59

ESA In this new view of a vast star-forming cloud called W3, ESA´s Herschel space observatory tells the story of how massive stars are born. W3 is a giant molecular cloud containing an enormous stellar nursery, some 6200 light-years away in the Perseus Arm, one of our Milky Way Galaxy´s main spiral arms. Spanning almost 200 light-years, W3 is one of the largest star-formation complexes in the outer Milky Way, hosting the formation of both low- and high-mass stars. The...

Europe's Herschel Space Observatory Has Detected Some Very Young Stars
2013-03-20 10:59:56

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Some of the youngest stars ever seen have recently been found, thanks to the European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel Space Observatory. Herschel's observations were used in conjunction with contributing observations from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the Atacama Pathfinder Experiment (APEX) telescope in Chile -- a collaboration involving the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy (MPIFR) in Germany, the Onsala Space Observatory...

Herschel Space Observatory Running On Fumes
2013-03-05 15:58:38

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The European Space Agency said Tuesday that its Herschel Space Observatory is beginning to wrap up its mission. Famous for its ability to view the sky in the entire wavelength range from far-infrared to submillimeter, the space observatory is beginning to run out of its supply of liquid helium coolant. ESA says Herschel is running on its last fumes and will be running empty in the coming weeks. Herschel first launched on May 14,...

Herschel Observed Asteroid Apophis Over The Weekend
2013-01-09 14:28:25

ESA ESA´s Herschel space observatory made new observations of asteroid Apophis as it approached Earth this weekend. The data shows the asteroid to be bigger than first estimated, and less reflective. Catalogued as asteroid (99942) Apophis (previously 2004 MN4), it is often nicknamed ℠the doomsday asteroid´ in popular media, after initial observations made after its discovery in 2004 gave it a 2.7% chance of striking Earth in April 2029. With additional data, however,...

2013-01-03 10:58:57

With its 2160 liters of liquid helium about to run out, the Herschel Space Observatory will, by the end of March, become just another piece of space junk. In January´s Physics World, Steve Eales, a University of Cardiff astronomer who leads one of the telescope´s largest surveys, explains how this space facility has advanced our understanding of star and galaxy formation. Submillimeter wavelength astronomy -- the kind of astronomy that the European Space Agency´s Herschel...

Word of the Day
  • A terrible or repulsive person.
Regarding the etymology of 'humgruffin,' the OED says (rather unhelpfully) that it's a 'made-up word.' We might guess that 'hum' comes from 'humbug' or possibly 'hum' meaning 'a disagreeable smell,' while 'gruffin' could be a combination of 'gruff' and 'griffin.'