Latest Observational astronomy Stories

Astrophysicists Use Three-Telescope Interferometry To Observe How Black Holes Are Fueled
2012-05-18 03:45:33

By combining the light of three powerful infrared telescopes, an international research team has observed the active accretion phase of a supermassive black hole in the center of a galaxy tens of millions of light years away, a method that has yielded an unprecedented amount of data for such observations. The resolution at which they were able to observe this highly luminescent active galactic nucleus (AGN) has given them direct confirmation of how mass accretes onto black holes in centers of...

WISE Catches Cosmic Dust Bunny
2012-04-27 03:13:54

Images from NASA's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) reveal an old star in the throes of a fiery outburst, spraying the cosmos with dust. The findings offer a rare, real-time look at the process by which stars like our sun seed the universe with building blocks for other stars, planets and even life. The star, catalogued as WISE J180956.27-330500.2, was discovered in images taken during the WISE survey in 2010, the most detailed infrared survey to date of the entire celestial sky....

2012-04-19 11:56:43

The Astrophysical Journal, a leading professional astronomy research publication, will issue a special edition of its Letters volume on April 20 with papers about observations made with NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) airborne telescope. SOFIA is a highly modified Boeing 747SP aircraft that carries a telescope with a 100-inch (2.5-meter) diameter reflecting mirror that conducts astronomy research not possible with ground-based telescopes. By operating in the...

Image 1 - Astronomers Use ALMA To Dissect Nearby Planetary System
2012-04-12 11:46:36

[ Watch the Video ] Astronomers have made a breakthrough discovery in understanding a nearby planetary system, giving clues about how these systems form and evolve. Scientists used the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) to find that planets orbiting the star Fomalhaut must be smaller than originally thought. The high-resolution images show that both the inner and outer edges of the thin, dusty disk have very sharp edges.  This, as well as computer simulations,...

2012-04-05 03:36:27

Observations by two of the European Space Agency's space observatories have provided a multi-wavelength view of the mysterious galaxy Centaurus A. The elliptical galaxy Centaurus A at visible, far-infrared and x-ray wavelengths. In visible light the galaxy appears as a ball of stars, with a thick lane of dust running across it. The far-infrared light shows the glow from jets of material emanating from near the black hole in the galaxy´s core. Also visible is a twisted disc of dust,...

Image 1 - Venus Invades the Pleiades
2012-04-03 03:00:29

Watch out Seven Sisters, Venus is coming. This week the second planet from the sun will pass directly in front of the Pleiades star cluster. It's a rare sunset conjunction that's easy to find with the unaided eye, but best seen through binoculars or a small telescope. The action began on Monday evening, April 2nd, when Venus enters the outskirts of the little dipper-shaped asterism. Look west at sunset for Venus--it's the brightest thing around--then scan the area using binoculars. The...

Latest Observational astronomy Reference Libraries

2014-01-12 00:00:00

Image Caption: NGC 4414, a typical spiral galaxy in the constellation Coma Berenices, is about 56,000 light-years in diameter and approximately 60 million light-years distant. Credit: NASA/ESA/Wikipedia What is Astrophysics? For much of the modern age the term Astrophysics has been used synonymously with Astronomy. This interchange is so common that many textbooks even offer the two as having the same meaning. However, from a strictly historical perspective there are differences...

2010-10-08 17:45:24

Radio telescopes, used in tracking and collecting data from satellites and space probes, are a form of directional radio antenna used in radio astronomy. They operate on the radio frequency portion of the electromagnetic spectrum where they detect radio sources. Radio telescopes are large parabolic antennas used singly or in an array and are located far from major centers of population in order to avoid electromagnetic interference. Karl Guthe Jansky built the first radio antenna used to...

2010-09-24 17:50:57

A telescope, designed to aid the observation of remote objects, collects some form of electromagnetic radiation (such as visible light). The Netherlands developed the first known practical telescope in the 17th century. The term "telescope" was termed in order to describe Galileo's instruments in 1611. However, Galileo was not the inventor of the telescope. It was Hans Lippershey, Zacharias Janssen, and Jacob Metius who are credited with the creation of the telescope. In 1668, Isaac Newton...

2014-01-12 00:00:00

Sample Entry: Astronomy is the scientific study of stars, planets, comets, galaxies, and other phenomena that occur outside Earth's atmosphere (e.g. cosmic radiation). Astronomy deals with the evolution, physics, chemical makeup, meteorology, and motion of celestial objects, and also the formation of the universe. The word Astronomy comes from the Greek words astron (meaning "star") and nomos (meaning "law"). Astronomy is one of the oldest sciences. Since the dawn of man, people always...

2009-04-28 11:47:36

The Reverend Thomas William Webb (December 14, 1807 "“ May 19, 1885) was a British astronomer and faithful clergyman. The lone son of a clergyman, the Rev. John Webb was raised and educated by his father in absence of his mother who died in Webb's early childhood. He travelled to Oxford to attend Magdalen College. Soon after, he was ordained a minister by the Anglican Church in 1829. In 1843, he married Henrietta Montague. Mrs. Webb died on September 7, 1884. Webb followed shortly...

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Word of the Day
  • A 'bachelor seal'; a young male seal which is prevented from mating by its herd's older males (mated bulls defending their territory).
This comes from the Russian word for 'bachelors.'