Latest Star Stories
The holy grail of planetary astronomy is to find a solar system that mirrors our own. While a lot of effort has been placed on finding a planet with Earth-like properties – the right size, an atmosphere, the right temperature – of equal importance is the search for a Sun-like star.
The formation of planets of stars is still somewhat of a mystery to astronomers. While much progress has been made, particularly in the last few decades, there are still unanswered questions as to how the planetary building blocks form. But now, new research may be closing that knowledge gap.
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The amount of light originating from known populations of galaxies and quasars is far less than the amount required to explain the amount of hydrogen that helps bridge empty spaces between galaxies, according to research appearing in a recent edition of The Astrophysical Journal Letters.
Astronomers investigating behavior of the universe shortly after the Big Bang have made a surprising discovery: the properties of the early universe are determined by the smallest galaxies.
The age of ‘baby stars’ is difficult to gauge, but a newly published study in the journal Science has revealed scientists used a technique similar ultrasound technology to determine how old these young stars are.
Observations of a Sun-like star through the Herschel Space observatory may have unlocked the mystery of meteorites in our own galaxy, according to European Space Agency (ESA) astronomers.
The ‘Pillars of Creation’ is one of the most famous images made with the Hubble Space Telescope. It shows cooler interstellar gases being eroded by intense radiation and wind from nearby massive stars.
Using the AKARI orbiting observatory, astronomers from the Open University have made the first large-scale maps of icy material where stars are forming.
The first images taken by the Dark Energy Survey (DES) after the survey began in August 2013 have revealed a rare, ‘superluminous’ supernova that erupted in a galaxy 7.8 billion light years away.
The prominent feature that allows for the existence of life on Earth is the Sun. Radiation from our closest star provides heat and energy to our planet, driving biological processes and providing the necessary conditions for liquid water to naturally exist. But our Sun is only but one star in this vast Universe. And as it turns out, most stars are quite different than the one that illuminates our day. For this reason, scientists have, for hundreds of years, attempted to study the other...
UV Astronomy -- UV astronomy is the branch of astronomy and astrophysics which deals with objects visible in ultraviolet (UV) radiation. UV radiation ranges approximatively from 10nm (extreme UV) to 380nm (near UV). Ultraviolet line spectrum measurements are used to discern the chemical composition, densities, and temperatures of interstellar medium, and the temperature and composition of hot young stars. UV observations can also provide essential information about the evolution of...
Hertzsprung-Russell Diagram -- In stellar astronomy, the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram (H-R diagram) shows the relation between the absolute magnitude and the spectral types of stars. It was invented around 1910 by Ejnar Hertzsprung and Henry Norris Russell. There are two equivalent forms. One is the observer's form which plots the color of the star on one axis and the absolute magnitude on the other axis. The theoretician's form plots the temperature of the star on one axis and the...
X-ray Burster -- X-ray bursters are a class of binary stars which are luminous in X-rays. They contain a neutron star and a low-mass companion star. The companion fills its Roche lobe and therefore the neutron star is accreting matter from it. The inflowing gas forms an accretion disk around the neutron star. Sometimes X-ray bursters show a sudden increase in their X-ray luminosity, called X-ray burst. All properties of the X-ray bursts can be explained assuming that they result from...
Variable Star -- Most stars are of nearly constant luminosity. Our own Sun is a good example which goes through practically no measurable variation in brightness. There are, however, stars which do vary in brightness, called variable stars. They fall into two main groups: Intrinsic variables These are stars which have intrinsic variations in brightness, that is the star itself gets brighter and dimmer. There are many types of intrinsic variables, the main types being: -- Mira...
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