Latest Local Group Stories

Milky Way Larger Than Previously Thought
2012-10-06 07:49:29

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports — Your Universe Online The mass of the Milky Way is approximately 20% larger than previously believed, scientists from the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) have discovered. The NAOJ team, led by associate professor Mareki Honma, used measurements from radio telescopes, including Japan's VLBI (Very Long Baseline Interferometry) Exploration of Radio Astrometry or VERA device, to determine that the distance from the sun to the center...

X-Ray Nova Reveals A Black Hole Surprise
2012-10-05 15:40:26

[ Watch the Video: X-ray Nova Reveals a New Black Hole in Our Galaxy ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new stellar-mass black hole has been discovered in our galaxy by NASA's Swift satellite. High-energy X-rays emanating from a source towards the center of our Milky Way galaxy were observed, indicating the presence of a previously unknown black hole. "Bright X-ray novae are so rare that they're essentially once-a-mission events and this is the first one...

Milky Way Surrounded By Halo
2012-09-24 19:28:01

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online The Milky Way Galaxy is known for its spirals, as well as Earth's home in the cosmos, but now it will also be known as a galaxy that features a halo. Astronomers using NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory found evidence that the Milky Way Galaxy is embedded in a halo of hot gas that extends for hundreds of thousands of light years. Scientists estimated that the mass of the halo found is comparable to the mass of all the stars in...

Spitzer And Hubble Telescopes Discover Furthest Galaxy Ever
2012-09-19 19:01:35

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, light took off, then traveled 13.2 billion light-years until it was finally picked up by NASA's telescopes. Astronomers have identified the furthest galaxy ever using NASA's Spitzer and Hubble space telescopes. The light captured by the telescope was from when the universe was just 500 million years old, according to NASA. "This galaxy is the most distant object we have ever...

Planets Can Form In The Center Of Violent, Unstable Galaxies
2012-09-12 14:05:07

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Listen to the podcast “How Planets Form” with redOrbit's Dr. John Millis and planet-hunting expert Dr. Eric Mamajek of the University of Rochester. The center of the Milky Way seems like the last place to form a new planet, inhospitable and violent even. Stars crowd each other, whizzing through space like cars on a rush hour freeway while supernova explosions blast out shock waves and bathe the region in intense...

2012-09-08 08:24:01

April Flowers for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online A team of astrophysicists from the Center for Astrophysics at the University of Notre Dame are exploring a discrepancy between the amount of lithium predicted by the standard models of elemental production during the Big Bang and the amount of lithium observed in the gas of the Small Magellanic Cloud. The Small Magellanic Cloud is a dwarf galaxy with a diameter of about 7,000 light-years.  It contains several hundred...

Black Holes Abound - In The Millions
2012-08-29 14:25:38

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Millions of black holes have been discovered, as well as extreme galaxies called hot DOGs using NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission. The telescope has helped reveal millions of dusty black hole candidates throughout the universe, and about 1,000 dustier objects that are thought to be the brightest galaxies ever found called dust-obscured galaxies, or hot DOGs. "WISE has exposed a menagerie of hidden objects,"...

Milky Way Not The Only Galaxy On The Block
2012-08-23 13:09:05

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A new sky survey has revealed that our Milky Way galaxy may not be as special as scientists had previously thought. The Milky Way is a fairly common type of galaxy, but being paired up with neighbors like the Magellanic Clouds makes it stick out above the rest, so much so that astronomers thought it could be a one of a kind occurrence. However, astronomer Dr. Aaron Robotham burst everyone's bubble when searching for groups of...

Latest Local Group Reference Libraries

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...

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...

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.

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...

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
  • A large punch-bowl of the eighteenth century, usually of silver and with a movable rim, and decorated with flutings and a scalloped edge. It was also used for cooling and carrying wine-glasses.
  • A kind of cotton handkerchief having white spots on a colored ground, the spots being produced by a chemical which discharges the color.
This word is possibly named after Monteith (Monteigh), 'an eccentric 17th-century Scotsman who wore a cloak scalloped at the hem.'