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Earth-like biospheres on other planets may be rare

A new analysis of known exoplanets has revealed that Earth-like conditions on potentially habitable planets may be much rarer than previously thought. The work focuses on the conditions required for oxygen-based photosynthesis to develop on a planet, which would enable complex biospheres of the type found on Earth.

Jun 23rd, 2021

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How a supermassive black hole originates

How do supermassive black holes in the early universe originate? Scientists have come up with an explanation: a massive seed black hole that the collapse of a dark matter halo could produce.

Jun 16th, 2021

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'Great Dimming' of Betelgeuse caused by a dusty fart

The red supergiant Betelgeuse - best known for being in Orion's armpit - has recently gone through what astronomers have named the 'Great Dimming', where the otherwise very bright star has become darker and cloudy. International researchers say that it's darkened state is likely the result of a toot of dust and gas that originated in a cool spot in the star's southern hemisphere.

Jun 16th, 2021

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Discovery of the largest rotation in the universe

By mapping the motion of galaxies in huge filaments that connect the cosmic web, astronomers have found that these long tendrils of galaxies spin on the scale of hundreds of millions of light years. A rotation on such enormous scales has never been seen before.

Jun 14th, 2021

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Astronomers spot a 'blinking giant' near the centre of the Galaxy

Astronomers observed the star decreasing in brightness by a factor of 30, so that it nearly disappeared from the sky. While many stars change in brightness because they pulsate or are eclipsed by another star in a binary system, it's exceptionally rare for a star to become fainter over a period of several months and then brighten again.

Jun 11th, 2021

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Astronomers discover earliest gigantic black hole storm

Researchers discovered a titanic galactic wind driven by a supermassive black hole 13.1 billion years ago. This is the earliest-yet-observed example of such a wind to date and is a telltale sign that huge black holes have a profound effect on the growth of galaxies from the very early history of the Universe.

Jun 11th, 2021

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Liquid water on exomoons of free-floating planets

The moons of planets that have no parent star can possess an atmosphere and retain liquid water. Astrophysicists have calculated that such systems could harbor sufficient water to make life possible - and sustain it.

Jun 10th, 2021

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Scientists discover new exoplanet with an atmosphere ripe for study

An international group of collaborators have discovered a new, temperate sub-Neptune sized exoplanet with a 24-day orbital period orbiting a nearby M dwarf star. The recent discovery offers exciting research opportunities thanks to the planet's substantial atmosphere, small star, and how fast the system is moving away from the Earth.

Jun 9th, 2021

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