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Latest Local Group Stories

Black Hole Caught Belching In Neighboring Galaxy
2013-01-08 08:36:30

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A team of scientists conducting a long-term study of molecules in galaxies gained a tantalizing look at what is likely a powerful belch by a gorging black hole at the center of a changing galaxy. "The discovery was entirely serendipitous. Our observations were spread over a few years, and when we looked at them, we found that one galaxy had changed over that time from being placid and quiescent, to undergoing a hugely energetic...

Andromeda Surrounded By Dwarf Galaxies
2013-01-04 04:57:16

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have discovered a group of dwarf galaxies moving in unison near the Andromeda Galaxy around the host known as Messier 31 using the MegaCam on the Canada-France-Hawaii and W. M. Keck Observatory telescopes on the summit of Mauna Kea, Hawaii. Analogous to the planets of our own Solar System, the structure of these small galaxies — nearly half that orbit Andromeda - lies in a plane. What is truly surprising to the...

NASA's Swift Team Collects More Than 100 Snapshots For Image Gallery Gift
2012-12-31 10:31:00

NASA Of the three telescopes carried by NASA's Swift satellite, only one captures cosmic light at energies similar to those seen by the human eye. Although small by the standards of ground-based observatories, Swift's Ultraviolet/Optical Telescope (UVOT) plays a critical role in rapidly pinpointing the locations of gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), the brightest explosions in the cosmos. But as the proxy to the human eye aboard Swift, the UVOT takes some amazing pictures. The Swift team is...

Stellar Patrons Of The Milky Way Bar Identified By Astronomers
2012-12-19 15:03:31

SDSS-III Forget the restaurant at the end of the Universe – astronomers now have the clearest understanding yet of the bar at the center of the Milky Way. Scientists with the Sloan Digital Sky Survey III (SDSS-III) have announced the discovery of hundreds of stars rapidly moving together in long, looping orbits around the center of our Galaxy. "The best explanation for their orbits is that these stars are part of the Milky Way bar," says David Nidever, a Dean B. McLaughin Fellow...

Astronomers Need Your Help Looking For Space Anomalies
2012-12-19 13:55:27

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers are reaching out to the public and asking for a little help in a study to find holes in dust clouds that are threaded throughout our galaxy. By looking at images from the Herschel Space Observatory, combined with those from NASA´s Spitzer satellite, members of the public can join the scientists by helping to distinguish between dense clumps of cold dust and possible holes in these dusty clouds. Dust clouds do...

Microquasar Found In Distant Galaxy
2012-12-12 13:35:22

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have found a microquasar in a galaxy far away for the first time, according to a report in the journal Nature. The discovery of the microquasar gives hope that more objects may be found in nearby galaxies, which could give astronomers the opportunity to study them in detail, unraveling some of their mysteries. In a microquasar, a black hole with a mass several times that of the Sun pulls material from its companion star...

Spotting Distant Galaxy Clusters With WISE
2012-12-07 05:33:49

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online As grand and colorful as it is, our solar system is a fleck in the grander cosmos. Our Milky Way galaxy has hundreds of billions of solar systems, yet it is only just a drop in the sea of galaxies. Galaxy clusters, the rarest and largest of galaxy groupings, can be the hardest to find, which is where NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) becomes helpful. So far, the mission's all-sky infrared maps have revealed one...

Andromeda Project Wants Your Help Searching For Star Clusters
2012-12-05 13:08:22

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new project, named The Andromeda Project, is asking the public's help to search through Hubble Space Telescope images to identify star clusters and increase our understanding of how galaxies evolve. The new project is a collaboration between scientists at the University of Washington, the University of Utah and other partners, aiming to study thousands of high-resolution Hubble images. “It´s an amazing opportunity to...

Astronomers Take Starburst Galaxy Census
2012-12-04 13:02:44

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have taken a census of hundreds of previously unseen starburst galaxies, revealing high star-formation rates across the Universe. The team used the European Space Agency's Herschel space observatory and ground-based W. M. Keck Observatory to make the observation. Starburst galaxies give birth to hundreds of solar masses' worth of stars every year, while galaxies like our Milky Way produce only one Sun-like star per year....

Hubble Image Shows Hercules A
2012-11-29 14:26:18

[ Watch the Video: Hercules A Zoom Sequence ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new Hubble Space Telescope image released today shows off a multi-wavelength view of radio galaxy Hercules A. The image was produced through a collaboration of the Hubble Space Telescope's Wide Field Camera 3, and the upgraded Karl G. Jansky Very Large Array (VLA) radio telescope in New Mexico. The yellowish elliptical galaxy seen in the image is about 1,000 times more massive than...


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
call-note
  • The call or cry of a bird or other animal to its mate or its young.
'Call-note' is newer than 'bird-call,' which originally referred to 'an instrument for imitating the note of birds' but now also refers to 'the song or cry of a bird.'
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