Latest Local Group Stories

Astronomers Observe Galaxy In Act Of Dying
2013-06-03 13:16:28

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers announced at the 222nd American Astronomical Society meeting in Indianapolis that they have observed the first clear example of a galaxy in the act of dying. The team says they saw a bright dwarf galaxy relatively close to Earth's Milky Way that was "trailing fireballs." They said until now, there has been no clear example of this transformation happening. “We think we´re witnessing a critical stage in...

Galaxy Mega Merger Spotted By Herschel And Keck
2013-05-23 04:53:50

Watch the Video: Mega Galaxy Merger ] April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Around 11 billion years ago, two hungry young galaxies collided and they are now forming a massive galaxy approximately 10 times the size of the Milky Way. The new mega-galaxy, HXMM01, was discovered as part of a UC-Irvine led project conducted with the W.M. Keck Observatory, the Herschel space observatory, and other research facilities around the world. It is extremely rare to capture the...

Clouds Of Hydrogen Gas Found In Our Galactic Backyard
2013-05-08 12:37:51

Watch the video “Intergalactic Clouds Lurk Between Nearby Galaxies" John P. Millis, PhD for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online As we gaze into space beyond the confines of our own Milky Way, we see a Universe filled with galaxies. But what scientists have come to realize is that the emptiness that spans between these giant pools of stars is not empty at all, but rather is filled with massive amounts of gas. In fact, these gas reservoirs can sometimes outweigh the galaxies...

Sagittarius A Black Hole To Devour Hot Molecular Gas
2013-05-07 12:42:37

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The European Space Agency's (ESA) Herschel spacecraft has revealed that the supermassive black hole in the center of our galaxy is about to get a taste of some hot molecular gas. Sagittarius A has a mass of about four million times that of our Sun and sits about 26,000 light-years away from us. It is a few hundred times closer to us than any other galaxy with an active black hole at its center, making it ideal for studying these...

Galaxy Forms New Stars With Extreme Efficiency
2013-04-23 18:18:31

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Efficiency experts and green technology proponents can now look to the heavens for inspiration, as astronomers have identified a galaxy that forms stars at almost 100 percent efficiency. According to a new report in Astrophysical Journal Letters, telltale signs from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE), the Hubble Space Telescope and the Plateau de Bure interferometer at the Institut de Radioastronomie...

Young Universe Was A Massive Factory For Star Formation
2013-04-17 13:36:09

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online Astronomers say they have discovered a star factory in a galaxy so distant that they see it when the Universe was only six percent of its current age of about 13.7 billion years old. The team wrote in the journal Nature that HFLS3 sits at about 12.8 billion light-years from Earth. They said the distant galaxy is producing about 3,000 Suns per year, which is more than 2,000 times that of our own Milky Way galaxy. "This is the...

Most Massive Binary Candidate Identified
2013-04-17 04:52:37

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A team of astronomers, led by Hugues Sana of the University of Amsterdam, has observed a binary star that potentially weighed 300 to 400 times the mass of our Sun at its birth. The present day combined mass of the two stars is between 200 and 300 times the solar mass, depending on its evolutionary stage. This makes it potentially the most massive binary star discovered to date. The findings of this study have been published in...

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,...

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.'