Astronomers have looked back nearly 13 billion years, when the Universe was less than 10 percent its present age, to determine how quasars - extremely luminous objects powered by supermassive black holes with the mass of a billion suns - regulate the formation of stars and the build-up of the most massive galaxies.
By analyzing the light of hundreds of thousands of celestial objects, astronomers from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) have created a unique map of enigmatic molecules in our galaxy that are responsible for puzzling features in the light from stars.
An international consortium has published in a single article a compendium of data obtained after the simultaneous research of three supernovas and of their corresponding Gamma-Ray Bursts (GRB). The research enabled contrasting statistically that the supernovas associated with GRB emit greater quantities of nickel compared to those not linked to GRB.
While many astronomical collaborations use powerful telescopes to target individual objects in the distant universe, a new project at is doing something radically different: using small telescopes to study a growing portion of the nearby universe all at once.
A NASA-sponsored website designed to crowdsource analysis of data from the agency's Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) mission has reached an impressive milestone. In less than a year, citizen scientists using DiskDetective.org have logged 1 million classifications of potential debris disks and disks surrounding young stellar objects (YSO). This data will help provide a crucial set of targets for future planet-hunting missions.
Working at temperatures matching the interior of the sun, researchers at Sandia National Laboratories' Z machine have been able to determine experimentally, for the first time, iron's role in inhibiting energy transmission from the center of the sun to near the edge of its radiative band - the section of the solar interior between the sun's core and outer convection zone.
At a time when our earliest human ancestors had recently mastered walking upright, the heart of our Milky Way galaxy underwent a titanic eruption, driving gases and other material outward at 2 million miles per hour. Now, at least 2 million years later, astronomers are witnessing the aftermath of the explosion: billowing clouds of gas towering about 30,000 light-years above and below the plane of our galaxy.
New research reveals a spatial association between the presence of sulfur and hydrogen found in martian soil. The work may in turn identify hydrous iron sulfates as key carriers of H2O in bulk martian soil.
For life as we know it to develop on other planets, those planets would need liquid water, or oceans. Geologic evidence suggests that Earth's oceans have existed for nearly the entire history of our world. But would that be true of other planets, particularly super-Earths? New research suggests the answer is yes and that oceans on super-Earths, once established, can last for billions of years.
When you're a kid every birthday is cause for celebration, but as you get older they become a little less exciting. You might not want to admit just how old you are. And you might notice yourself slowing down over the years. You're not alone - the same is true of stars. They slow down as they age, and their ages are well-kept secrets. Astronomers are taking advantage of the first fact to tackle the second and tease out stellar ages.