Latest Local Group Stories

Blue Supergiant Star Born In The Wild Discovered
2013-04-11 15:09:53

Subaru Telescope A duo of astronomers, Dr. Youichi Ohyama (Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, Academia Sinica or ASIAA, Taiwan) and Dr. Ananda Hota (UM-DAE Centre for Excellence in the Basic Sciences or CBS, India), has discovered a Blue Supergiant star located far beyond our Milky Way Galaxy in the constellation Virgo. Over fifty-five million years ago, it emerged in an extremely wild environment, surrounded by intensely hot plasma (a million degrees centigrade) and amidst raging...

X-Ray Emissions In Young Metal-Poor Stars Similar To Metal-Rich Stars
2013-04-03 08:10:18

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Astronomers have found that a region of space known as the Wing has fewer “metals” (elements with more than two protons in the nucleus) compared to most other areas within our own Milky Way galaxy. There are also relatively lower amounts of gas, dust and stars in the Wing compared to the Milky Way. This knowledge makes the Wing an excellent candidate for the study of the life cycle of stars and the gas lying between...

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...

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
  • In music, a work for a keyboard-instrument, like the pianoforte or organ, originally intended to utilize and display varieties of touch: but the term has been extended so as to include many irregular works, similar to the prelude, the fantasia, and the improvisation.
This word is Italian in origin, coming from the feminine past participle of 'toccare,' to touch.