Astronomy News

Courtesy of Science Daily

Welcome to Sea and Sky's Astronomy News. Here you can find links to the latest space news headlines on the topic of astronomy. Click on any yellow title below to view the full news article. The news article will open in a new browser window. Simply close the browser window when you are finished reading the article to return to the news article listing. You can use the "Click for More" link to go to a page with more news headlines.


Astronomy News -- ScienceDaily
Updated : Fri, 24 Feb 2017 23:42:04 EST

Vast luminous nebula poses a cosmic mystery
Astronomers have found an enormous, glowing blob of gas in the distant universe, with no obvious source of power for the light it is emitting. Called an 'enormous Lyman-alpha nebula' (ELAN), it is the brightest and among the largest of these rare objects, only a handful of which have been observed.
Publ.Date : Thu, 23 Feb 2017 12:43:25 EST

Space dust particles deploy bubble parachutes on their fiery descent, scientists discover
Bubbles acting like parachutes are deployed by some cosmic dust particles on their entry into Earth's atmosphere, preventing them from burning up.
Publ.Date : Thu, 23 Feb 2017 10:20:26 EST

Neural networks promise sharpest ever images
Telescopes, the workhorse instruments of astronomy, are limited by the size of the mirror or lens they use. Using 'neural nets', a form of artificial intelligence, a group of Swiss researchers now have a way to push past that limit, offering scientists the prospect of the sharpest ever images in optical astronomy.
Publ.Date : Thu, 23 Feb 2017 09:24:06 EST

NASA telescope reveals largest batch of Earth-size, habitable-zone planets around single star
NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope has revealed the first known system of seven Earth-size planets around a single star. Three of these planets are firmly located in the habitable zone, the area around the parent star where a rocky planet is most likely to have liquid water.
Publ.Date : Wed, 22 Feb 2017 13:09:41 EST

Surprising dunes on comet Chury
Surprising images from the Rosetta spacecraft show the presence of dune-like patterns on the surface of comet Chury. Researchers have studied the available images and modeled the outgassing of vapor to try to explain the phenomenon. They show that the strong pressure difference between the sunlit side of the comet and that in shadow generates winds able to transport grains and form dunes.
Publ.Date : Wed, 22 Feb 2017 08:28:56 EST

Possible dark matter ties in Andromeda Galaxy
NASA's Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope has found a signal at the center of the neighboring Andromeda galaxy that could indicate the presence of the mysterious stuff known as dark matter. The gamma-ray signal is similar to one seen by Fermi at the center of our own Milky Way galaxy.
Publ.Date : Wed, 22 Feb 2017 08:23:11 EST

Brightest neutron star yet has a multipolar magnetic field
Scientists have identified a neutron star that is consuming material so fast it emits more x-rays than any other. Its extreme brightness can only be explained if the star has a complex multipolar magnetic field, the researchers say.
Publ.Date : Tue, 21 Feb 2017 16:15:32 EST

Prediction: More gas-giants will be found orbiting Sun-like stars
New planetary formation models indicate that there may be an undiscovered population of gas giant planets orbiting around Sun-like stars at distances similar to those of Jupiter and Saturn.
Publ.Date : Tue, 21 Feb 2017 13:07:00 EST

Experiments call origin of Earth's iron into question
New research reveals that the Earth's unique iron composition isn't linked to the formation of the planet's core, calling into question a prevailing theory about the events that shaped our planet during its earliest years.
Publ.Date : Tue, 21 Feb 2017 11:07:19 EST

Mapping the family tree of stars
Astronomers are borrowing principles applied in biology and archaeology to build a family tree of the stars in the galaxy. By studying chemical signatures found in the stars, they are piecing together these evolutionary trees looking at how the stars formed and how they are connected to each other. The signatures act as a proxy for DNA sequences. It's akin to chemical tagging of stars and forms the basis of a discipline astronomers refer to as Galactic archaeology.
Publ.Date : Mon, 20 Feb 2017 19:16:22 EST

Why are there different 'flavors' of iron around the Solar System?
New work shows that interactions between iron and nickel under the extreme pressures and temperatures similar to a planetary interior can help scientists understand the period in our Solar System's youth when planets were forming and their cores were created.
Publ.Date : Mon, 20 Feb 2017 13:47:41 EST

Examining exploding stars through the atomic nucleus
Imagine being able to view microscopic aspects of a classical nova, a massive stellar explosion on the surface of a white dwarf star (about as big as Earth), in a laboratory rather than from afar via a telescope. Cosmic detonations of this scale and larger created many of the atoms in our bodies. A safe way to study these events in laboratories on Earth is to investigate the exotic nuclei or 'rare isotopes' that influence them.
Publ.Date : Sun, 19 Feb 2017 16:51:24 EST

Hubble spotlights a celestial sidekick
Technically, this picture is merely a sidekick of the actual object of interest -- but space is bursting with activity, and this field of bright celestial bodies offers plenty of interest on its own.
Publ.Date : Fri, 17 Feb 2017 16:09:48 EST

Minor planet named Bernard
A minor planet in the Solar System will officially be known as Bernardbowen from today after Australian citizen science project theSkyNet won a competition to name the celestial body.
Publ.Date : Fri, 17 Feb 2017 09:59:07 EST

Radial acceleration relation found in all common types of galaxies
The distribution of normal matter precisely determines gravitational acceleration in all common types of galaxies, a team of researchers reports. This provides further support that the relation is tantamount to a new natural law, the researchers say.
Publ.Date : Fri, 17 Feb 2017 01:25:02 EST

Planeterrella recreates Earth's vivid lightshows in miniature
A new device has been built to recreate Earth's auroras and other space phenomena in miniature. The planeterrella is one of just a handful in the United States.
Publ.Date : Thu, 16 Feb 2017 11:08:20 EST

Astronomers propose a cell phone search for galactic fast radio bursts
Fast radio bursts seem to come from distant galaxies, but there is no obvious reason that, every once in a while, an FRB wouldn't occur in our own Milky Way galaxy too. If it did, astronomers suggest that it would be 'loud' enough that a global network of cell phones or small radio receivers could 'hear' it.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Feb 2017 16:28:02 EST

The heart of a far-off star beats for its planet
For the first time, astronomers have observed a star pulsing in response to its orbiting planet. The star, which goes by the name HAT-P-2, is about 400 light years from Earth and is circled by a gas giant measuring eight times the mass of Jupiter -- one of the most massive exoplanets known today.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Feb 2017 13:05:45 EST

New delta Scuti: Rare pulsating star 7,000 light years away is one of only seven in Milky Way
The newest delta Scuti (SKOO-tee) star in our night sky is so rare it's only one of seven identified by astronomers in the Milky Way. The star -- like our sun -- is in the throes of stellar evolution, to conclude as a dying ember in millions of years. Until then, the exceptional star pulsates brightly, expanding and contracting from heating and cooling of hydrogen burning at its core.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Feb 2017 13:05:36 EST

NASA's OSIRIS-REx takes its first image of Jupiter
This image was taken at 3:38 a.m. EST on Feb. 9, 2017, when the spacecraft was 75 million miles (120 million kilometers) from Earth and 419 million miles (675 million kilometers) from Jupiter. With an exposure time of two seconds, the image renders Jupiter overexposed, but allows for enhanced detection of stars in the background.
Publ.Date : Tue, 14 Feb 2017 13:05:33 EST