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 : Thu, 19 Apr 2018 16:18:47 EDT

NASA planet hunter on its way to orbit
NASA's Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) launched on the first-of-its-kind mission to find worlds beyond our solar system, including some that could support life. Researchers will use spectroscopy to determine a planet's mass, density and atmospheric composition. Water, and other key molecules, in its atmosphere can give us hints about a planets' capacity to harbor life.
Publ.Date : Thu, 19 Apr 2018 10:57:26 EDT

Optimizing space travel efficiency
Sending a human into space and doing it efficiently presents a galaxy of challenges. Scientists have explored ways to integrate the logistics of space travel by looking at a campaign of lunar missions, spacecraft design, and conducting research, to create a framework to optimize fuel and other resources.
Publ.Date : Wed, 18 Apr 2018 19:43:07 EDT

Meteorite diamonds tell of a lost planet
Scientists have examined a slice from a meteorite that contains large diamonds formed at high pressure. The study shows that the parent body from which the meteorite came was a planetary embryo of a size between Mercury to Mars.
Publ.Date : Wed, 18 Apr 2018 14:48:10 EDT

Black hole and stellar winds form giant butterfly, shut down star formation in galaxy
Researchers have completed an unprecedented 'dissection' of twin galaxies in the final stages of merging. The new study explores a galaxy called NGC 6240. While most galaxies in the universe hold only one supermassive black hole at their center, NGC 6240 contains two -- and they're circling each other in the last steps before crashing together.
Publ.Date : Wed, 18 Apr 2018 14:15:17 EDT

Martian moons model indicates formation following large impact
Scientists posit a violent birth of the tiny Martian moons Phobos and Deimos, but on a much smaller scale than the giant impact thought to have resulted in the Earth-moon system. Their work shows that an impact between proto-Mars and a dwarf-planet-sized object likely produced the two moons.
Publ.Date : Wed, 18 Apr 2018 14:15:14 EDT

340,000 stars' 'DNA' interrogated in search for sun's lost siblings
Astronomers have revealed the 'DNA' of more than 340,000 stars in the Milky Way, which should help them find the siblings of the sun, now scattered across the sky. This is the first major announcement of an ambitious survey as part of a quest to uncover the formulation and evolution of galaxies -- after the Australian-led Galactic Archaeology survey, called GALAH, commenced three years ago.
Publ.Date : Wed, 18 Apr 2018 09:20:55 EDT

Can we tell black holes apart?
Astrophysicists have created and compared self-consistent and realistic images of the shadow of an accreting supermassive black hole. The goal was to test if Einsteinian black holes can be distinguished from those in alternative theories of gravity.
Publ.Date : Tue, 17 Apr 2018 11:57:21 EDT

Looking for extrasolar planets: DARKNESS lights the way
An international team of scientists has developed a new instrument to detect planets around the nearest stars. It is the world's largest and most advanced superconducting camera.
Publ.Date : Mon, 16 Apr 2018 18:56:25 EDT

Once upon a time, an exoplanet was discovered
In recent history, a very important achievement was the discovery, in 1995, of 51 Pegasi b, the first extrasolar planet ever found around a normal star other than the Sun.
Publ.Date : Mon, 16 Apr 2018 12:16:21 EDT

An astrophysicist is unlocking the secrets to dark matter
New research examines an interesting light source that was captured by four different telescopes each pointing in a different direction in the sky.
Publ.Date : Mon, 16 Apr 2018 12:15:33 EDT

Hubble catches a colossal cluster
This NASA/ESA Hubble Space Telescope image shows a massive galaxy cluster glowing brightly in the darkness.
Publ.Date : Fri, 13 Apr 2018 13:34:56 EDT

Circumbinary castaways: Short-period binary systems can eject orbiting worlds
Planets orbiting 'short-period' binary stars, or stars locked in close orbital embrace, can be ejected off into space as a consequence of their host stars' evolution, according to new research.
Publ.Date : Thu, 12 Apr 2018 13:08:02 EDT

Fascinating zoo of discs discovered around young stars
New images from the SPHERE instrument on ESO's Very Large Telescope are revealing the dusty discs surrounding nearby young stars in greater detail than previously achieved. They show a bizarre variety of shapes, sizes and structures, including the likely effects of planets still in the process of forming.
Publ.Date : Wed, 11 Apr 2018 11:11:06 EDT

Tiny distortions in universe's oldest light reveal strands in cosmic web
Scientists have decoded faint distortions in the patterns of the universe's earliest light to map huge tubelike structures invisible to our eyes -- known as filaments -- that serve as superhighways for delivering matter to dense hubs such as galaxy clusters.
Publ.Date : Tue, 10 Apr 2018 13:27:03 EDT

Outback radio telescope listens in on interstellar visitor
A telescope in outback Australia has been used to listen to a mysterious cigar-shaped object that entered our Solar System late last year. When 'Oumuamua was first discovered, astronomers thought it was a comet or an asteroid from within the Solar System. But after studying its orbit and discovering its long, cylindrical shape, they realised 'Oumuamua was neither and had come from interstellar space.
Publ.Date : Tue, 10 Apr 2018 10:09:53 EDT

The largest catalog ever published of very high energy gamma ray sources in the galaxy
Astronomers have published the results of 15 years of gamma ray observations of the Milky Way. Its telescopes installed in Namibia have studied populations of pulsar wind nebulae and supernova remnants, as well as microquasars, never before detected in gamma rays.
Publ.Date : Mon, 09 Apr 2018 10:38:43 EDT

Hunting for dark matter in the smallest galaxies in the Universe
Astrophysicists have created a new method to measure the amount of dark matter at the center of tiny “dwarf” galaxies.
Publ.Date : Fri, 06 Apr 2018 09:17:58 EDT

Giant solar tornadoes put researchers in a spin
Despite their appearance solar tornadoes are not rotating after all, according to a team of scientists. A new analysis of these gigantic structures, each one several times the size of the Earth, indicates that they may have been misnamed because scientists have so far only been able to observe them using 2-dimensional images.
Publ.Date : Thu, 05 Apr 2018 22:34:10 EDT

Dark matter might not be interactive after all
Astronomers are back in the dark about what dark matter might be, after new observations showed the mysterious substance may not be interacting with forces other than gravity after all.
Publ.Date : Thu, 05 Apr 2018 22:34:07 EDT

Dead star circled by light
New images reveal a rich landscape of stars and glowing clouds of gas in one of our closest neighboring galaxies, the Small Magellanic Cloud. The pictures have allowed astronomers to identify an elusive stellar corpse left behind by a 2,000-year-old supernova explosion. The MUSE instrument was used to establish where this object is hiding, and Chandra X-ray Observatory data confirmed its identity as an isolated neutron star.
Publ.Date : Thu, 05 Apr 2018 12:03:29 EDT