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Latest Local Group Stories

Distant Black Hole Wakes Up For A Snack
2013-04-02 13:51:29

Watch the video "Black Hole Eats Super-Jupiter" Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers using the European Space Agency's (ESA) Integral space observatory have watched as a black hole woke up to feed on a low-mass object that strayed just a little too close. The team was using the Integral observatory to study a galaxy 47 million light-years away when they noticed a bright X-ray flare coming from another location. "The observation was completely unexpected,...

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...

Young Supernova Remnant Discovered By NASA’s Swift Satellite
2013-03-16 10:18:20

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports — Your Universe Online NASA´s Swift space observatory detected the previously undiscovered remains of a supernova during an extensive X-ray survey of the Milky Way, officials from the US space agency announced on Friday. NASA believes the shattered star remains, which have been named G306.3—0.9 after the coordinates of its sky position, are among the youngest-known supernova remnants in the galaxy. “Astronomers have previously...

Are We There Yet? Astronomers Measure Distance To Neighboring Galaxy
2013-03-06 12:13:52

[ Video 1 ] | [ Video 2 ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have now accurately measured the distance to our neighboring galaxy, the Large Magellanic Cloud (LMC). Scientists have struggled with trying to find an accurate distance to the LMC, which is one of the nearest galaxies to the Milky Way. However, a team of astronomers used observations of a rare class of double star, known as eclipsing binaries, to determine that LMC lies 163,000 light-years...

The Milky Way's Violent Past
2013-03-06 04:20:09

[ Listen to the three-part interview with Prof. Holley-Bockelmann in RedOrbit´s Your Universe Today Podcasts ] John P. Millis, Ph.D. for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online As astronomers peer out into the distant reaches of the Universe they find that some galaxies are emitting enormous amounts of radiation from their cores. Supermassive black holes at the center of these galaxies consume the surrounding gas and dust, heat it up, and thrust it into outer space at nearly the...

Scientists Recreate Spiral Arms Of Ancient Milky Way
2013-03-04 19:11:57

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Using observations made possible by the European Space Agency´s INTEGRAL satellite, a pair of French scientists has been able to recreate how the Milky Way´s spiral arms looked millions of years ago. According to their report in the Astrophysical Journal, the two researchers based their recreation on the observations of high mass X-ray binaries (HMXBs), pairs of massive stars that are surrounded with the remnants of...

Stellar Motions In Outer Halo Reveal Evidence Of Milky Way Evolution
2013-02-22 11:40:05

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers using NASA's Hubble Space Telescope to peer deep into the vast stellar halo that envelopes our galaxy have uncovered tantalizing evidence for the possible existence of a shell of stars that are a relic of cannibalism by our Milky Way. For the first time ever, Hubble was used to gain precise measurements of the sideways motion of a small sample of stars located far from the galaxy's center. The unusual lateral motion of...

Astronomers Rethink Black Hole Growth Rate
2013-02-12 18:38:49

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online The rapidly expanding problem of obesity doesn't seem to just be limited to here on Earth, because new research published in the Astrophysical Journal suggests black holes are growing at larger rates than what had previously been thought possible Most galaxies have black holes at the center of them that can weigh anywhere from one million to one billion times as much as the Sun. The black hole found in the middle of our Milky...

Seagull Nebula Wings Shown In New ESO Image
2013-02-06 05:10:24

[ Video 1 ] | [ Video 2 ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new image released by the European Space Observatory (ESO) taken by its Wide Field Imager shows off a section of the Seagull Nebula. The cloud of dust and glowing gas seen in the image that forms the "wings" of the seagull reveals a mix of dark and glowing red clouds. The Seagull Nebula, or IC 2177, lies between the constellations of Canis Major and Monoceros in the southern sky. Astronomers refer to...

Spiral Galaxy Messier 106 Has A Secret
2013-02-05 10:47:02

[ Video 1 ] | [ Video 2 ] | [ Video 2 ] NASA/ESA Hubble Heritage Team The NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope — with a little help from an amateur astronomer — has produced one of the best views yet of nearby spiral galaxy Messier 106. Located a little over 20 million light-years away, practically a neighbor by cosmic standards, Messier 106 is one of the brightest and nearest spiral galaxies to our own. Despite its appearance, which looks much like countless other galaxies,...


Latest Local Group Reference Libraries

45_9843bacae4e6aaccde9ad6442185fc8e
2010-09-16 15:14:03

The two Magellanic Clouds (or Nubeculae Magellani), composed of the Large Megellanic Cloud and the Small Magellanic Cloud, are irregular dwarf galaxies visible in the southern hemisphere. They are members of our Local Group and orbit the Milky Way galaxy. Persian astronomer Al Sufi, in 964, was the first to have written anything about the Magellanic Clouds proving they have been known since early time amongst the Middle East peoples. Sufi, in his Book of Fixed Stars, calls the clouds...

67_62ac767a66aa75de2afaba1deb05cb8c
2010-09-13 17:05:00

The Local Group, compromising more than 30 galaxies (including dwarf galaxies and the Milky Way), is a group of galaxies with a gravitational center located somewhere between the Milky Way and the Andromeda Galaxy. With a binary (dumbbell) shape and a total mass of (1.29 ± 0.14) × 1012M the Local group covers a 10 million light-year diameter. The local group is part of the Virgo Supercluster. The two largest galaxies in the group are the Milky Way and the Andromeda both Spiral...

0_0c560ad0ccf4d719031a7916437450a5
2010-09-13 16:59:36

The IC 342/Maffei Group (also known as the IC 342 Group or the Maffei 1 Group) is the closest group of galaxies to the Local Group. The member galaxies are both concentrated around the two brightest galaxies of IC 342 and Maffei 1. The group can therefore be described as a binary group. Along with many others the group is located in the Virgo Supercluster.

6_11b0e50afd172f6a61aeda24e25504702
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Ring Galaxy -- A subclass of interacting galaxies, ring galaxies, provides a unique laboratory for studying unusually large bursts of non-nuclear star formation. The rings in these systems are often large (10s of kiloparsecs) and contain what appear to be associations of giant H{\small II} regions. As a basis for future modeling of star forming regions in observed ring galaxies we present a series of combined n-body/gas numerical experiments on ring formation and evolution. Three...

6_d430450f9e0cfd67807619c4bc1fbdf32
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Irregular Galaxy -- In astronomy, a class of galaxy with little structure, which does not conform to any of the standard shapes in the Hubble classification. The two satellite galaxies of the Milky Way, the Magellanic Clouds, are both irregulars. Some galaxies previously classified as irregulars are now known to be normal galaxies distorted by tidal effects or undergoing bursts of star formation (see starburst galaxy). ----- NASA Click here to learn more on this topic from...

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Word of the Day
cruet
  • A vial or small glass bottle, especially one for holding vinegar, oil, etc.; a caster for liquids.
This word is Middle English in origin, and ultimately comes from the Old French, diminutive of 'crue,' flask.
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